Coronavirus, continued...again

Karen Berger, PharmD, Medical Writer

As COVID-19 continues to dominate the news every day, I thought I would set out to see how local NJMMP members are faring under these conditions, and how the dispensaries are managing the crowds. 

Some patients chose to plan ahead and stock up, like Dina Simko of Waretown, New Jersey, who “stocked up before Murphy said that dispensaries were to stay open. So because our anxiety is through the roof, our 2 week supply has lasted us about 4 days…lol! But at least we know we can get more!” 

Other patients are taking a more relaxed approach, like Lisa Salisbury, from Voorhees, New Jersey. “I have not gone to get anything. Curaleaf by me has sent emails and texts that the wait could be hours and hours. I’m not waiting that long. I have enough vape to get me thru, so I’ll only go if I’m out!” 

So what are dispensaries around New Jersey doing to prepare for the inevitable crowds of NJMMP patients? 

Curaleaf in Bellmawr is offering priority shopping for patients 60 years of age and older. These patients can shop during the first operating hour of each day. They are also offering a service called Waitlist me, so patients can wait on a digital waiting list, and remain in their cars. Patients receive a text when it is time to go in, and the interaction is 1:1, keeping in line with limiting exposure. Curaleaf also offers express pickup services, and will soon offer curbside service. 

Harmony Dispensary in Secaucus is dispensing only by curbside pickup, and by appointment. Patients can use a scheduling system to book a ten-minute time slot. Orders must be submitted the day before the appointment. There are no walk-ins. Patients must pay cash only at this time, and must stay in the car. 

Breakwater Treatment and Wellness in Cranbury is not taking new patients. A note on the website says, “during this time of heightened precaution we are able to see a limited number of patients each day. Because of high volume it is possible that we will stop accepting patients for the day shortly after opening.” On Tuesdays and Thursdays, patients with an even number ID (go by the last number, right before the “P”) can go to the dispensary, and on Wednesdays and Fridays, patients with an odd number can go to the dispensary. All existing appointments have been canceled, and it is first come, first serve, and cash only (no ATM on premises). 

At Garden State Dispensary, patient information is taken outside, and patients wait in the car for the next available dispensary technician. Patients are called in the order they signed up. A maximum of 10 patients are permitted in the Woodbridge dispensary waiting room, and a maximum of 5 patients are permitted in the Union dispensary waiting room.

*This does not contain all information for every dispensary. Please visit the website or call the dispensary for more information. 

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