The research, published in July’s Journal of Adolescent Health, looked at the availability of medical marijuana dispensaries, price and variety of their products in school neighborhoods and how they affected teen usage of cannabis and possible susceptibility in the future.
The conclusion, according to the study’s authors from the Department of Family Medicine and Public Health at the University of California San Diego, showed that data does not support claims that the presence of medical marijuana dispensaries increased cannabis use among teenagers.
“There was no evidence supporting the associations of medical marijuana availability, price, or product variety around school with adolescents’ marijuana use and susceptibility to use,” the researchers concluded.
The number of dispensaries in a neighborhood, their proximity to schools and the variety of produces did not influence teen cannabis use, the study found.
“Neither the product price nor the product variety in the dispensary nearest to school was associated with marijuana use or susceptibility to use,” the report continued. “The results were robust to different specifications of medical marijuana measures.”
The authors noted that their research was important because the availability of tobacco and alcohol has often been cited as an influencing factor in present teen usage and later in life.
They also noted two other studies associating the presence of MMJ dispensaries with cannabis use by adults, as defined proximity by zip code or city.