In November of 2020, Oregon voters passed Measure 109 that directs the Oregon Health Authority (OHA) to regulate and license Psilocybin Services. Currently, OHA is establishing the parameters for psilocybin to be used on an individual or possibly small group basis, overseen by a trained "Facilitator," only in a licensed facility. Under this measure, Psilocybin Services will be available as of January 1, 2023.
While the measure was presented to and passed by Oregon voters as a mental health treatment option, now that the measure has passed, OHA and its advisory board report they have decided to backstep from this. The Oregon Psilocybin Services (OPS) Board has stated that the program is not to be a clinical or medical model but rather a tool in the overall wellbeing toolbox conducted on an informed-consent basis.
OPS facilitators are not providing mental health therapy. They are only allowed to administer psilocybin and be present with your during a session. They operate under an Informed Consent model and have no formal review or grievance processes. Please consider your personal needs if using this program versus other options available.
Due to the gap created by the change in scope by OHA, PATA will work to educate and update the public on how they can obtain a level of mental health therapeutic service that many Oregonians want and expect. Below are details about OPS as they work to implement the general use of psilocybin in a licensed setting, and at the bottom of this page you'll find our recommendation for those seeking mental health care in Oregon using Psilocybin Services.
We believe that, for those who are receiving Psilocybin Services for mental health treatment, a trained and licensed mental health therapist should be involved. This will help ensure that seekers of actual Psilocybin Assisted Therapy receive quality, ethical mental health care and attain the best possible outcomes.
While licensed therapists may not be able to be your sitter/guide/facilitator, to achieve the best mental health outcomes they should be involved in the preparation process, determining your set and setting, and in your post-session integration sessions.
We also believe that the appropriate clinic setting is vital for a positive experience. Psilocybin is a natural product that pairs best with therapeutic experiences connected as much as possible to a natural environment. While this may not always be available, we encourage clients to consider their session environment and how that may impact your emotions while experiencing psilocybin.
OPS's goal is to establish the framework for individuals 21 and over to receive Psilocybin Services (described below) at a licensed facility by a licensed facilitator. Psilocybin will be provided by regulated producers who deliver the substance to the facility for administration on site only.
This is currently being defined. In short, Psilocybin Services will allow licensed facilitators (defined below) to conduct sessions of unknown number and duration with clients who are under the influence of psilocybin while present at a licensed facility. The OPS, under the direction of the Oregon Health Authority, is also identifying the needs to regulate and license the manufacturing, transportation, delivery, sale, and purchase of psilocybin products.
The OPS Board is working through select committees to establish the parameters for services to begin January 1, 2023.
This is truly the million-dollar question. The advisory board's first task was to review the clinical research about psilocybin that is available. They did so (see Rapid Review) and concluded in their report to OPS that, "According to what currently exists and has been reviewed, therapeutic services for improved mental health outcomes consist of three types of sessions.:
NOTE, however, that the OPS board has removed "mental health therapy" and "treatment" from their official recommendation for service provision, and none of the above types of sessions (other than administration), as outlined in the rapid review of literature, is likely to be required to access psilocybin services.
Facilitators will be individuals over the age of 21 who are licensed by the State of Oregon. Minimum requirements are for adults to have a GED education and have passed the required 120 hour training program, which is under development.
Certified Facilitators are not required to have mental health therapy education or licensure. Licensed therapists may become facilitators if they complete facilitator training. However, they may not be able to legally provide therapy due to psilocybin remaining federally illegal.
No. There is no requirement that facilitators be licensed mental health therapists, and a facilitator license does not equal a mental health professional license.
Licensed mental health professionals can choose to become licensed by OPS for psilocybin services. They would then need to be both licensed therapists and licensed facilitators. If they are going to administer psilocybin they may not be able to concurrently act as a licensed therapist as facilitators can't encourage you or help you to process your feelings.
Licensed mental health therapists in Oregon have a minimum of a graduate degree (a bachelor's degree plus an additional 2-5 years of education and supervised experience). As licensees, they are already bound by strict guidelines and ethics, trained in screening and assessment, experienced in helping others with goal- and intention-setting, and specialized in helping others integrate new information that facilitates change, personal growth, and reductions in stress and symptoms.
Licensed mental health therapists have at least a master's degree in counseling, counseling psychology, marriage and family therapy, or social work, have undergone a practicum/internship of 6-12 months, and have written an extensive research paper on a specialty subject of their choice. In addition, they must do two years of post-degree, full-time experience providing therapy under the supervision of a more experienced therapist. Then, licensed therapists must seek 20 additional hours of education and training every year.
If you are seeking Psilocybin Assisted Therapy as a mental health treatment or therapy to treat a diagnosis, a psilocybin Facilitator should not and cannot ethically provide this unless they also have mental health professional education and licensure as described above. However, they may not be able to do so through national and state regulatory boards as psilocybin is still federally illegal.
This is still under development and could be expensive. OPS is not designed to be equitable or affordable to the masses. As long as there is no requirement for a licensed mental health or medical professional to be involved in provision of services, Oregon Psilocybin Service will not be covered by insurance. Costs will include at minimum:
Current projections are for a single session to cost from hundreds of dollars to thousands. Many facilities are incorporating their own ceremony or unique experience surrounding a session that could cost over $10,000.
Following are the main questions we have regarding Measure 109's current provisions for Psilocybin Services: