Jack Jones asked his doctor if he could try medical marijuana.
After surgeries in his treatment for lymphoma, he experienced a lot of pain. He’s not keen on taking opiate painkillers, most of which make him feel worse, said Jones, 71, a Vietnam veteran and published author who worked more than 30 years as a journalist.
So with the newly-approved use of medical marijuana in New York, he thought he would give it a shot.
Jones is one of about 5,000 patients who have been certified by their doctors in New York to take the drug, which was legalized for medical purposes in the state Jan. 7. He is one of 14 certified patients in Ontario County, with most patients in the Finger Lakes region in Monroe County, according to the state Department of Health.
New York has one of the most restrictive medical marijuana programs in the nation. Now, five months since the state implemented its program, the new medicine made from a familiar substance — and how it is being handled — is under scrutiny for a slew of reasons.
Who can get it? Who can afford it? Does it work?