The program is off to a slow start: Only 150 physicians have completed the required registration with the state, and only eight of 20 dispensaries expect to open today. The remaining 12 dispensaries are expected to open by month’s end. Like Casey, Claude Peters, a retired teacher who lives in Canandaigua, is also frustrated with the way the substance is being handled for medical use. He supports the states legalizing medical marijuana and sees the restrictions on manufacturing, implementation, prescription and distribution as a roadblock. Peters recalled being prescribed powerful opiates for pain when recovering from a serious car accident in 2002 and when recovering from surgery in 2009. The drugs worked, he did not become addicted, and he was grateful for the relief, he said. He wishes that medical marijuana would get the same treatment. Many patients and advocates of medical marijuana are frustrated with the 18-month implementation period as well as restrictions on the number of dispensaries and types of qualifying conditions. Julie Netherland, deputy state director for the Drug Policy Alliance, said her organization also is concerned that many patients may have to wait longer for medication because of the delay in opening all 20 dispensaries. Page 2 of 2 – “Even with 20 dispensaries there were going to be problems with patient access,” Netherland said.