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State Hires Top Medical Pot Official

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ST. PAUL, Minn. (AP) – A health official who managed Minnesota’s efforts to reduce tobacco use and obesity will run the state’s new medical marijuana program.

The Minnesota Department of Health said Wednesday that Michelle Larson, a deputy director in the department’s Office of Statewide Health Improvement, would direct the new program.

Larson will oversee the selection of two marijuana manufacturers and set up of a patient registry. Patients are expected to be able to begin getting medical marijuana in July 2015.

Larson was chosen among more than 150 applicants. She starts Aug. 13.

Minnesota legislators approved medical marijuana this year, making it the 23rd state plus the District of Columbia to do so.

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