1. There is hereby established in the department an emergency medical marihuana access program (referred to in this section as the “program”) under this section. The purpose of the program is to expedite the availability of medical marihuana to avoid suffering and loss of life, during the period before full implementation of and production under this title, especially in the case of patients whose serious condition is progressive and degenerative or is such that delay in the patient's medical use of marihuana poses a serious risk to the patient's life or health. The commissioner shall implement the program as expeditiously as practicable, including by emergency regulation.
2. The department shall begin accepting and acting on applications under this section for registered organizations as soon as practicable after the effective date of this section.
3. For the purposes of this section, and for specified limited times, the commissioner may waive or modify the requirements of this article relating to registered organizations, consistent with the legislative intent and purpose of this title and this section. Where an entity seeking to be a registered organization under the program operates in a jurisdiction other than the state of New York, under licensure or other governmental recognition of that jurisdiction, and the laws of that jurisdiction are acceptable to the commissioner as consistent with the legislative intent and purpose of this title and this section, then the commissioner may accept that licensure or recognition as wholly or partially satisfying the requirements of this title, for purposes of the registration and operation of the registered organization under the program and this section.
4. In considering an application for registration as a registered organization under this section, the commissioner shall give preference to the following:
(a) an applicant that is currently producing or providing or has a history of producing or providing medical marihuana in another jurisdiction in full compliance with the laws of the jurisdiction;
(b) an applicant that is able and qualified to both produce, distribute, and dispense medical marihuana to patients expeditiously;
(c) an applicant that proposes a location or locations for dispensing by the registered organization, which ensure, to the greatest extent possible, that certified patients with a special certification have access to a registered organization.
5. The commissioner may make regulations under this section:
(a) limiting registered organizations registered under this section to serving patients with special certifications;
(b) limiting the allowable levels of cannabidiol and tetrahydrocannabinol that may be contained in medical marihuana authorized under the program, based on therapeutics and patient safety.
6. A registered organization under this section may apply under section thirty-three hundred sixty-five of this title to receive or renew registration.
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