Second medical marijuana dispensary opens in C-U

By Michael Semaca, Staff Writer

A new medical cannabis dispensary, NuMed Urbana, will begin operations Tuesday, occupying a vacant lot at 105 E. University Ave.

Jayme Brewer, agent-in-charge of NuMed Urbana, said NuMed wants to provide a clinical approach to medical cannabis.

“So we want to work with patients, with their physicians, to get them the best medicine that we can provide, and to get them the best service and the best schedule to treat their medical needs,” Brewer said.

NuMed isn’t the first dispensary to come to the area; Champaign’s Phoenix Botanical opened in the spring, making NuMed the second.

Brewer said the two don’t have much of a relationship other than being in the same industry; she believes their approaches differ in some ways.

“We’re trying to make the patients as comfortable as possible, and to give them the best information possible, so we want to be at the forefront,” Brewer said. “We want to say ‘this is helping here, this is helping there.’ And we want to really be the experts in the field.”

Despite this, Brewer doesn’t think that having two dispensaries in the same area will be an issue for either business.

“The market is totally capable of supporting both of our dispensaries,” he said.

NuMed plans to introduce a few new products to the Champaign-Urbana area, such as a recently developed transdermal patch. These patches are designed to eliminate pain for up to twelve hours for patients.

Brewer said that patient reports have validated these claims, and that he has seen himself how the patches can help patients.

“I gave one to my neighbor, who has neuropathic pain, and I instructed him to go about his day as normal, to take all his regular medications, and just let me know if there’s any change,” he said. “He’s normally at about a four with his pain; he said after doing the patch, he’s between a two and a one. He said there’s just about none; there’s almost no pain whatsoever.”

Despite initial opposition to the industry following its legalization, Brewer believes that consumers are becoming more educated about the benefits that medical cannabis can offer.

“It’s happening very slowly, but as you get more people enrolled in the program, knowledge will spread,” he said. “And we can’t stop the truth; when people find out that there’s something out there that’s working, they want it, especially when they don’t have many alternatives.”

Brewer thinks that there is a lot of potential yet to be unlocked regarding the plant.

“Once we see legalization, you’re going to see all the benefits of this plant,” he said.

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