"We're gauging the situation as we go", said Gov. Andrew Cuomo, adding that the need for more dispensaries came with the increasing number of certified patients since NY legalized medical marijuana in 2014.
The state health department is looking to expand its medical marijuana program.
DOH spokesman Ben Rosen said in an interview that the non-smokable plant material provision allows for ground-based marijuana products, such as leaf material, to be included in medical marijuana products in capsule form or through other delivery methods designed by producers.
Potential patients, meanwhile, will now be able to enter dispensaries to speak to representatives about the products once the new rules take effect.
Along with the product changes, the new regulations also make changes for doctors and dispensaries.
A judge's August 2 order makes it clear, however, that although there is enough evidence to try the defendants, there is none to indicate the two former officers of Minnesota Medical Solutions charged with illegally delivering cannabis products to NY did so on behalf of their employer.
The Health Department is also refining the training program for practitioners.
Officials hope some rule changes will improve program experience for patients, practitioners, and manufacturers. That will kick off a 30-day public comment period, after which the Health Department can officially adopt the rules.
As of Aug 1 there were 25,736 patients certified for medical marijuana treatment.