Patient Centric team grows

Medical marijuana dispensary announces team of people who will staff facility.

Patient Centric, the Island’s only medical marijuana facility, announced new hires on Friday. Dispensary CEO Geoff Rose brought on Ray Whitaker as dispensary manager, and Kathleen Kretschmann and Dr. Sumner Silverman as patient clinicians.

“The staff consists of individuals who are professional, passionate, and committed,” Rose said in a press release. “They will educate patients on the proper and responsible use of

medical cannabis, and provide outreach and education to the community and health care

organizations.”

According to the release, Whitaker has been a fitness enthusiast for almost 40 years. He’s a National Academy of Sports Medicine (NASM) certified personal trainer, and an exercise instructor on-Island since 2010. He also has sales and management experience.

“Becoming a part of Patient Centric feels like a long-missing puzzle piece in my professional

life,” Whitaker said in the release. “I have been an advocate for the compassionate use of medical marijuana. I’ve also been a strong advocate of mental and physical fitness. Wellness is very individual. What works for one, might not work for another … Finally, patients will have a professionally managed medical marijuana dispensary in our community.”

Kretschmann has more than 40 years of healthcare experience. She served as the integrated care coordinator for Martha’s Vineyard Community Service’s Island Counseling Center, a substance abuse counselor at Martha’s Vineyard Hospital, and clinical director of behavioral health at South Fulton Medical Center in East Point, Ga. Kretschmann also served in the U.S. Air Force as a psychiatric nurse, and achieved the rank of captain.

“Joining the Patient Centric team as a consultant for the medical marijuana program is a terrific opportunity to serve the community of this special Island,” Kretschmann said. “I bring experience of caring for patients in behavioral health, addiction, and public health. My major concern has always been safety, and there will be careful guidance and follow-up for patients.”

Dr. Silverman is a licensed psychologist, and has been in private practice for 46 years. He received a certification in the science and medicine of cannabis from the department of pharmacology at the University of Vermont. Additional certification was gained through Green Flower, a cannabis education organization. He’s been observing cannabis and its medical benefits since the 1960s.

“My observation has been that cannabis usage is helpful in many kinds of cases,” Dr. Silverman said in the press release. “It is useful in relieving chronic pain, and as an aid to sleep. In proper dosages at appropriate times, it can be helpful as an adjunct to anxiety control and reduction.”

Patients can visit patientcentricmv.com for more information. The dispensary will be open and serving clients by the spring, according to the release.