Georgette Braun Rockford Register Star @georgettebraun


ROCKFORD – Marijuana dispensaries in the state can offer roadside sales to medical patients until the end of the month to protect them from possible coronavirus infection. One of Rockford’s two pharmacies is preparing.

Jason Erkes, chief communications officer of Crestco Labs, owner of Sunnyside Dispensary, said the company was in the process of completing roadside collection logs within the next week. “We will have a safe and optimized system to accommodate our patients as efficiently as possible,” he said in an email on Tuesday.

“We fully support the government’s initiative for medical pharmacies to offer roadside collection as this helps minimize the risk to our patients and staff,” he said.

The Illinois Department of Financial & Professional Regulation issued guidelines for pharmacies on Monday. The exchange of cash and products must take place on the company’s property, on a public sidewalk or on the curb next to the pharmacy.

Amy Manganelli, chief operating officer of the Mapleglen Care Center, said Tuesday that Mapleglen would not offer roadside pickup. But the pharmacy only restricts all sales through March 30th to those who are medical marijuana patients.

She said the company only operates two out of four sales counters to maintain a social distance of 6 feet. The employees wear gloves.

The recorded message from Sunnyside states that only medical marijuana customers are allowed to shop on Mondays and Tuesdays, but that they are allowed to shop in-store or online. Recreational cannabis users cannot go to the pharmacy to order, they must do so online. You will be asked to wait for the order to be confirmed for collection before going to the pharmacy. The rules apply until March 30th.

Recreational cannabis sales became legal in Illinois on January 1. The pharmacies in Rockford have been serving medical marijuana cardholders since 2015.

Georgette Braun: gbraun@rrstar.com; @GeorgetteBraun