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Australia to legalise MDMA and magic mushrooms, psilocybin, from tomorrow, July 1

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MDMA and magic mushrooms will be made available for psychiatrists to prescribe to people suffering with some mental health conditions from this weekend.

The Therapeutic Goods Administration approved the use of psychedelics in February with the change in the law coming into effect on July 1.

The drugs are still prohibited and will only be legal as part of psychiatric treatments or in clinical trials. 

Medicine containing MDMA will be used to treat post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) while psilocybin, otherwise known as magic mushrooms, will be used in those with treatment-resistant depression.

John Lee is just one of the Aussies championing the use of psychedelics as a psychological treatment.

MDMA (above) and magic mushrooms will be available for psychiatrists to prescribe for some mental health conditions from July 1

Mr Lee was able to recover from a years-long depression using MDMA after his daughter, Freyja, took her own life at 21-years-old in 2019.

He said he sought the help of an illegal psychedelic therapist and was able to talk to his daughter during the drug-induced hallucinations, allowing him to properly grieve without anger.

However, the decision in February divided health professionals with Australia to become the first country to legalise MDMA and psilocybin treatments – despite no Australian trials reporting results.

Back in February, the Mind Medicine Australia team celebrated the legalisation.

A statement from the group read: ‘We are delighted with the decision which will be welcomed by so many suffering Australians. It specifically recognises the current lack of options for patients with specific treatment-resistant mental illnesses and the supporting evidence of safety and efficacy from clinical trials.

John Lee (right) was able to recover from a years-long depression after the death of his daughter (left) by using MDMA in conjunction with therapy sessions

John Lee (right) was able to recover from a years-long depression after the death of his daughter (left) by using MDMA in conjunction with therapy sessions

‘The support that we have had throughout this process has been incredible and overwhelming.

‘Finally, our hearts go out to all those Australians suffering from treatment resistant depression and treatment resistant post-traumatic stress disorder. 

‘They will now have the opportunity of accessing this breakthrough treatment with their mental health professionals, which has shown such positive safety and efficacy results internationally.’

Swinburne University Professor Susan Rossell, who leads Australia’s biggest trial on the effect psilocybin has on depression, called for more research to be complete before the law change. 

‘These treatments are not well established at all for a sufficient level of broad-scale implementation,’ she said.

‘We’ve got no data on long-term outcomes at all, so that worries me a lot, which is one of the reasons why I’m doing my very large study.’

The Australia Alcohol and Drug Foundation (ADF) in March shared its research into the use of magic mushrooms as medicine.

MDMA will be used to treat post-traumatic stress disorder while psilocybin, found in magic mushrooms (above), will target treatment-resistant depression

MDMA will be used to treat post-traumatic stress disorder while psilocybin, found in magic mushrooms (above), will target treatment-resistant depression

It stated psilocybin has been used by Indigenous communities for generations.

Magic mushrooms were also found to have showed promising results in treating anxiety, depression, PTSD and alcohol and nicotine dependence.

‘But in the late 60s the US banned all psychedelics and the world, including Australia, soon followed suit,’ it said.

‘So, despite promising findings, psychedelic research ended abruptly in the 70s.’

The ADF also noted psychedelic treatment needs to be carefully monitored as use of the drugs can worsen some psychological conditions – like personality disorders and schizophrenia.

‘In a clinical setting, a pre-determined and controlled dose of psilocybin is given to the patient under the supervision of a medical professional. Because the patient is in a therapeutic space and the dose is known, it is unlikely there will be a bad reaction,’ the ADF said.

‘When taking magic mushrooms recreationally, it can be hard to know how strong the dose is and whether there are other contaminants from the environment. 

‘It can also be hard to know how a person’s surroundings might affect their experience. This can make it more likely that a bad trip will occur.’

MDMA AND PSILOCYBIN TREATMENT IN AUSTRALIA

Patients looking to qualify for the psychedelic treatments need to have a pre-existing medical condition and have tried other treatments before.

MDMA is only available to those with treatment-resistant PTSD.

Psilocybin is only available to patients with treatment-resistant depression.

The new treatments could cost upwards of $30,000.

Treatment sessions (or ‘trips’) are to be held in a supervised setting with patients to undergo two to three session in combination with therapy. 

Jackyhttps://whatsnew2day.com/
The author of what'snew2day.com is dedicated to keeping you up-to-date on the latest news and information.

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