About PA Dispensaries

The medical marijuana program in the commonwealth has been very successful, but it is not without its concerns. Two of the main issues patients have expressed are product shortages, especially with flower, and price gouging because there is currently no cap on costs.

So before you head out to a dispensary, we recommend a little online research to find out what’s good with PA dispensaries. Check out the menus for dispensaries near you. Many dispensaries will update them from day-to-day so you can compare prices and inventory. Also, you can find dispensary reviews on websites like Weedmaps or PotGuide.com, keeping in mind that reviews from a year ago may reflect things dispensaries couldn’t control at the time. For example, if reviews from a year ago are down on the amount of flower a dispensary had available, that is likely to have improved and is pretty much out of the dispensary’s hands. However, if a substantial amount of reviews complain about customer service, that might be a red flag.

Another thing you can do, before you even look at menus, is research the variety of MMJ forms available in PA. It’s likely that different forms and strains will have varying effects for your condition. In PA, dispensaries must employ a pharmacist or physician during hours of operation, and you can make an appointment to meet with a pharmacist if you want to discuss what medical cannabis forms might be best for you.

Depending on where you are, comparative shopping might be limited. Currently (as of fall 2020), PA, the state with the fifth largest population, has about 90 open dispensaries. Maryland, coming in at 19th population-wise, has 102. However, these issues should smooth over as the PA MMJ market matures. By the way, the medical cannabis market is already doing so well, some experts predict it will encourage legislators to eventually legalize adult-use in PA. 

What MMJ Forms Do PA Dispensaries Offer?

Before April of 2018, dispensaries were allowed to sell:

  • Pills/Capsules
  • Extracts (Shatter, Wax, Oil, Budder, Resin)
  • Tinctures/Liquids
  • Topicals
  • Patches

As of April 2018, cannabis flower is also an option for medicinal use — but is only legal to vape it. Smoking flower is still illegal.  

Who Can Enter Dispensaries in PA?

Medical Marijuana ID cards are required for patients and caregivers to enter dispensaries. Adult visitors without a valid PA Medical Marijuana Card (including patients or caregivers) are not permitted in the facility. Non-patient minors may be permitted as visitors provided they are accompanied by a parent or guardian who possesses a valid PA Medical Marijuana Card (call ahead to verify).

Always remember to bring your MMJ card with you and have your Pennsylvania driver’s license or state ID on hand for your first visit to establish a personal record with the dispensary.

Can I Consume My MMJ at a Dispensary in PA?

Absolutely not. Patients are allowed to consume medical cannabis in homes and private residences. Other places like medical facilities may give special permission, but MMJ consumption is otherwise not allowed in public. This includes dispensary property. 

Changes Due to COVID-19

Due to the pandemic, the governor and PA’s secretary of health have announced the following temporary changes:

  • Dispensary employees can provide MMJ to a cardholder in their vehicle on the facility’s property.
  • The current cap that limits the number of patients assigned to one caregiver have been removed to allow for more caregivers to patients in need.
  • Background checks are eliminated for caregivers renewing their applications.
  • Remote doctor certification consultations now allowed for patients who are renewing. Renew with Elevate Holistics today!
  • Allowing for 90-day supply (instead of 30-day limit) with approved practitioners recommendation.

Top PA Dispensaries

Nature’s Medicines (Bloomsburg, Selinsgrove, State College)

The number one thing customers mention in feedback about this dispensary is the great customer service from the staff. Knowledgeable pharmacists and staff are also appreciated as well as their quality product, especially flower. Although the flower seems to go quickly. Keep in mind that until further notice, all their locations are doing pre-order only in response to the pandemic. Masks are required as well as a consultation with their pharmacist for patients new to the MMJ program. These consultations are conducted over the phone, which you must take with you to the location. Look for any change in this information in the banner above their menu online.

Ethos — Formerly Mission (Allentown)

This dispensary is known for their mission to ensure that new patients are fully informed about medical cannabis. Customers report excellent customer service, a comfortable atmosphere, and approval for the selection, including flower. During COVID-19, they are doing online orders with curbside pickup. You can pay cash or use CanPay for zero touch payment and a reduced wait time. They have excellent step-by-step instructions for their ordering and curbside process which you should definitely check out to make things as easy as possible.  

TerraVida Holistic Centers (Sellersville, Abington, Malvern)

Patients in the Greater Philadelphia area value the friendly knowledgeable staff of this female-owned dispensary that keeps them coming back. Not to mention the well-priced selection and their beautiful facilities that provide a chill and comfortable atmosphere. Also, they have a nice selection of flower. Currently, they are offering in-store or curbside pickup, which is online order only by appointment. Additionally, they offer a caregiver program to help you get your MMJ medicine delivered. 

Maitri Medicinals (Pittsburgh, Uniontown)

Patients talk about the great size, prices, and quality of this dispensary’s selection. Stores are set up to be very interactive, providing customers with a lot of valuable MMJ information from a friendly, knowledgeable staff. They offer weekly specials and discounts for veterans. During COVID-19, they are open regular hours for online orders and reservations by phone only. They also offer the CanPay app option for a safer, faster payment method. Make sure to check their website for updates and changes. 

The Healing Center (Cranberry, Washington, Monroeville)

The staff at The Healing Center locations seem to have established themselves as kind, helpful, knowledgeable experts who provide a safe and comfortable atmosphere for patients. We’ve also heard good things about their prices and selection. During COVID-19, they appear to have in-store service and ordering online available, but you should check their website for updates. The Online Order Lounge is a same-day order and pickup option, which allows you to bypass waiting room lines for an express line. However, you must pick your order up by close of business, same day, or your order is returned to shelf. 

Rise (Duncansville, Chambersburg, Cranberry, New Castle, King of Prussia, Hermitage, Mechanicsburg, Latrobe, York, Erie, Carlisle, Steelton)

Rise dispensaries offer a wide variety of resources to help their patients. From their “Cannabis Classroom,” to an extensive menu, to their rewards program, and phone consultations with their pharmacist. As of this time (Sept. 2020), Rise dispensaries in PA are not allowing walk-ins, but have online reservations and scheduled pickup for MMJ patients. Be sure to check their website for policies, as they will surely change with the pandemic climate. 

Columbia Care (Allentown, Scranton, Wilkes-Barre)

Patients rave about this dispensary, from the welcoming environment to the staff that is ready and willing to help you however they can. They’re on top of their strain and terpene knowledge and have a selection of quality products, according to reviews. Their website is showing regular hours, so be sure to check in for updates. Some of the locations offer pre-order and curbside pickup. 

Organic Remedies (Enola, Chambersburg, York)

Organic Remedies works together with PA Medical Marijuana Program approved growers to provide their patients with high-quality products. Positive reviews are a testament to their friendly and knowledgeable staff that will help you find the right product for you. During COVID-19, they are offering curbside pickup only, so check the website for updates, to peruse their menu, and for patient video guides on how the curbside service works.

Elevate Holistics

Is it time to renew your patient ID? Elevate Holistics is a safe and secure online cannabis clinic. Book your appointment now for a virtual certification visit with one of our compassionate cannabis doctors. It’s super-easy and convenient!