STEUBENVILLE, Ohio â€” Members of the public gathered at Eastern Gateway Community College in Steubenville on Thursday evening to learn about the benefits of medical marijuana.
“Weâ€™re trying to educate the public and anybody that wants to become a patient and teach them step-by-step how they can do that,â€ť said Michael Petrella, owner and CEO of Ohio Valley Natural Relief (OVNR).
OVNR held the forum to answer general questions about the medical marijuana program in Ohio, the difference between CBD and THC oils, and how to use a vaporizer. In addition, OVNR provided information on the 21 qualifying medical conditions that may be treated with medical marijuana in Ohio, as well as the conditions that may be added to stateâ€™s list.
“We funnel probably 20 calls a day at our dispensary on how to become a patient, or just general questions about medical marijuana,â€ť Petrella said.
Petrella also shared his story on how he got into the medical marijuana business after he lost his father to cancer.
“To me, I thought there has to be a better way of relief that people can take other than eating a handful of pills and still getting sick,â€ť he said.
Petrella said that these forums are a way to help the general public become more knowledgeable.
“Thereâ€™s still a lot of stigma around the cannabis industry as a whole. A lot of people donâ€™t know what is going on, and a lot just have a lot of questions,â€ť he said.
Attendees were also given packets of preliminary paperwork, as well as information on how to obtain medical marijuana.
OVNR will hold two more public forums this month â€“ one on March 12 at the Hopedale Fire Hall, and the other on March 21 at Belmont College.