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Green Solution moving forward with operations

Posted on Friday, March 2, 2018 at 9:44 am

By Rachel Christian
Staff Writer
Osceola County is finally going green.
It’s been over a year since 71 percent of Florida voters cast ballots in favor of medical marijuana.
But many governments, including Osceola County, were slow to embrace the new law.
Two weeks ago, local leaders granted three dispensary certificates to a Gainsville-based nursery called San Felasco.
The company had filed permits to operate under the name of The Green Solution with the county last year, but progress came to a halt after Osceola County passed a six-month moratorium on dispensaries over the summer.
The freeze ended Feb. 18, and the next day, San Felasco threatened legal action if the county refused to approve its certificates.
James McKee, a legal representative for The Green Solution, said the company is excited to finally move forward with operations.
“There is an underserved population in Osceola County,” McKee said. “We are interested in ensuring that all patients in Florida have easy access to the medicine they need.”
Two of the three shops will be located along U.S. Highway 192, with the third set to open near the corner of Pleasant Hill Road and John Young Parkway.
McKee said the company plans to open in the next few months.
Even though the shop will soon be open for business. Residents must still consult a physician and register with the state before purchasing legal cannabis.
Green Relief opened across Florida Hospital in Kissimmee last year to help clients with these preliminary steps. But without a single dispensary in Osceola County, the company had to refer patients to Orlando to get their medical marijuana prescriptions filled.
Kerry Barasatie, co-founder of Green Relief, said he is excited to for the change.
“I love that the dispensaries were approved. I think it’s going to be a great thing,” he said. “Many of our patients are older and don’t drive, so making the trip to Orlando can be a real headache.”
Barasatie partnered with practicing physician Dr. Frank Rodriguez in June to open Green Relief. The young business owner estimates that over 400 patients have visited the clinic since it opened last year.
The facility is currently expanding, and Barasatie said Green Relief would soon offer additional assistance to people managing pain related to automobile accidents.
He said individuals referred to his company after a car accident will receive consultation and medical marijuana recommendations at no cost.
Treadmills and other physical therapy equipment were installed at the facility earlier this week. Four staff members, including a physical therapist, were also recently hired.
Barasatie said his company plans to market itself to those who want a safe alternative to opioid-based pain medication.
“Car accidents can be a gateway to opioid addiction, especially for young people,” he said. “The doctor prescribes them three months or more of highly addictive opioids, so that even when the pain goes away, now they’re hooked on these pills.”
Barasatie said he sees the incoming dispensaries and his own booming business as a positive sign of changing times.
“I think there’s less of a stigma attached to it in the community than there was even a year ago when we opened,” he said. “I think people finally realize this is actually helping people. The taboo is disappearing.”