Study Finds Nearby Marijuana Dispensaries Don’t Impact Teen Weed Use

A California study has determined the presence of nearby medical marijuana dispensaries does not affect the rate of cannabis use by adolescents. Published in the July issue of the Journal of Adolescent Health, the research “aimed to examine the availability of medical marijuana dispensaries, price of medical marijuana products, and variety of medical marijuana products in school neighborhoods and their associations with adolescents’ use of marijuana and susceptibility to use marijuana in the future,” according to a report.

Proximity and Price Not a Factor

The study’s authors — Yuyan Shi, Ph.D., Sharon E. Cummins, Ph.D., and Shu-Hong Zhu, Ph.D. of the University of California San Diego Department of Family Medicine and Public Health — concluded that the data does not support claims that the presence of medical marijuana dispensaries and associated factors of product price and variety at the outlets increase teen cannabis use.

“There was no evidence supporting the associations of medical marijuana availability, price, or product variety around school with adolescents’ marijuana use and susceptibility to use,” they wrote.

Neither the number of dispensaries in a neighborhood nor their proximity to schools influenced teen cannabis use, the study found.

“The distance from school to the nearest medical marijuana dispensary (within 0-

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