Anthony Anzalone once called himself “Dr. Marijuana” and advertises as “NJGreenMD” because he was among the first physicians to participate in New Jersey’s medicinal marijuana program and claimed he referred more patients than any of his peers.
On Thursday, Anzalone earned the dubious distinction of being the first doctor associated with the program to jeopardize his license, by “indiscriminately authorizing” more than 3,000 patients — including some who never would have qualified —without examining them and their medical records, Attorney General Gurbir Grewal announced.
The trained obstetrician and gynecologist made himself rich by meeting patients in rented hotel ball rooms across the state and charging $350 for the initial visit and $100 every quarter to re-up each patient’s registration in the program. He authorized 3,250 patients over four years, Grewal said.
Based on those fees and the total number of patients he registered, Anzalone likely made more than $1 million just off the consultation fees, according to Grewal’s announcement that the doctor’s license has been temporarily suspended.
“We allege that Dr. Anzalone exploited his patients and the MMP for his own gain, completely disregarding the regulations meant to protect patients and promote the efficacious use of medicinal marijuana,” said Paul Rodríguez, acting director of the Division of Consumer Affairs, in a statement.