JACKSON, Miss. (WJTV) – In about five months, Mississippi will begin to see the rollout of medical marijuana in the state.

All medical marijuana will be regulated by the Mississippi State Department of Health (MSDH). Over the next few months, the department will be looking at how to best regulate the program. In July, MSDH will outline the rules and framework.

On August 15, 2021, licenses will be distributed, and then the program would officially start.

The head of the Mississippi Medical Marijuana Association (3MA), Ken Newburger, said having MSDH manage the program is the best option.

“Because it’s a medical program and everything about it needs to be handled from a health medicine perspective, the State Department of Health was the best choice. Most other states that have good, functioning medical marijuana programs chose the State Department of Health as their regulatory body. So that’s really why we felt like it was the right place,” said Newburger.

3MA began accepting membership applications at the end of 2020. In February, the association will host its first medical marijuana convention, and it will be virtual due to the rise of COVID-19 cases. More information will be released later this week about the event.