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In 2012, Lisa Livingston Brooker was diagnosed with Goodpasture’s Syndrome – a rare autoimmune disease which results in damage to the kidneys and lung. She later went on to have a kidney transplant. Following her surgery, Brooker says, the only thing that brought relief from the pain was medical cannabis.

“I wasn’t able to take pain medication because my kidneys were failing; I was miserable,” said Brooker. “Cannabis allowed me to be a part of my family’s life again.”

As Brooker still couldn’t take any pain medication after her brother, Lee Livingston, donated a kidney to her, she continued using medical cannabis as a remedy after surgery. Brooker says the relief she felt after using medical cannabis has prompted her to want to help people in the same situation.

Medical cannabis, or medical marijuana, has been gaining traction in New Mexico since its legalization

in 2007. There are currently 19,629 people in New Mexico who have enrolled in the New Mexico Department of Health’s Medical Cannabis Program as of this month, 405 of them in Eddy County.

Those who have been diagnosed with cancer, glaucoma, post-traumatic stress disorder, epilepsy and severe chronic pain, among other disorders and diseases, are eligible to receive a medical cannabis card, if recommended by a doctor. Any medical doctor (MD), doctor of osteopathy (DO), or nurse practitioner (NP) who can prescribe medicine in New Mexico can write a referral for the Medical Cannabis Program.

A patient with a medical marijuana card and their caregiver may collectively possess up to a three-month “adequate supply,” which is presumed to be no more than six ounces of usable marijuana.

After her kidney transplant, Brooker and her husband, Clayton, say they were motivated to start a new venture by opening a medical cannabis delivery business in the Artesia area. Through this business, they will deliver medical cannabis to people who are in possession of medical marijuana cards.

The Brookers hope to soon open the area’s first medical cannabis dispensary. The dispensary will be called HES, and its potential location will be outside of the Artesia city limits.

“The point of us opening this dispensary isn’t just to get people high,” said Brooker. “That’s a common misconception, and we’re trying to convince people we’re here to help.”

Brooker says certain strains of cannabis HES will be offering to those with medical cannabis cards contain lower levels of tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), which is the chemical found in cannabis responsible for most of the psychological effects, or the “high” one gets from smoking or ingesting marijuana, and higher levels of cannabidiol (CBD), which helps relieve aforementioned ailments.

For more information on medical cannabis and HES, contact Brooker at 703-3176.