BROOKLAND, Ark. (WMC) - Customers like Penny Elder waited in line Tuesday morning for the grand opening of NEA Full Spectrum in Brookland, Arkansas.
"I celebrated. I thought, yeah, this is right up my alley. This is for me," said Elder.
NEA Full Spectrum is the first medical marijuana dispensary to open up in northeast Arkansas. It’s the 12th overall in the state.
Elder began using medical marijuana a few months ago after she got tired of taking medications prescribed by her doctor.
"I've gotten off of two of my other medications so the medical marijuana is doing me so me good," said Elder.
The WMC Action News 5 cameras weren’t allowed inside the dispensary. General manager Lance Huey says they have many levels of security in place and the proper identification is required to go in.
"State ID and their medical marijuana card. You have to have a card to be in this building. Either a worker or a patient," said Huey.
According to the Arkansas Department of Health website, as of Dec. 6 more than 30,000 medical marijuana ID cards have been approved.
Patients must meet certain qualifications including being 18 or older, being diagnosed with a qualifying medical condition and having an official written certification from a physician.
"We're just working to make sure we have the products that the customers want and need and that we do it in a safe environment," said Huey.
NEA Full Spectrum plans to add a delivery service within a 50 mile radius.
Since the first dispensary opened in May 2019, Arkansas’ medical marijuana patients have spent a total of $23.3 million to obtain 3,433 pounds of medical marijuana.