Missouri Republican pushes to legalize ‘magic mushrooms’ to treat depression, post-traumatic stress disorder. • Missouri Independent

The magic in ‘magic mushrooms’ may have the power to defeat PTSD, and a St. Charles County Republican deputy wants to make it Legal in a therapy setting.

State Representative Tony Lovasco of O’Fallon is not a hippie. He says he’s never eaten psilocybin mushrooms or smoked a joint.

“I’ve never smoked a cigarette before,” he said in an interview with The Independent. “I am a very boring man.”

But he is convinced that the A growing body of research — and growing interest from federal regulators — means Missouri must make psychoactive mushroom therapy legal for people over 21.

In addition to PTSD, Lovasco’s bill would allow psilocybin to be used by people with treatment-resistant depression or who are terminally ill. The medication would be administered by medical professionals in a clinic, nursing home, or nursing home.

“These are very empathetic people, you know, not the kind of people you might look at as drug addicts, or people looking to find some hole in the system to get high,” he said. “These are the people who want to be treated, who want to get better.”

Psilocybin and other hallucinogens are legal in only a few locations in the United States.

Starting this month, psilocybin Legal in Oregon in a therapeutic setting For people over the age of 21, police in Portland raided a store that was selling mushrooms under it The name of the shroom house.

In November, Colorado voters approved a ballot Remove criminal penalties For possession of psilocybin and other narcotic drugs. The New Hampshire Supreme Court in 2020 overturned the conviction on the grounds The right to use and own psilocybin for religious purposes.

Bill Lovasco defines psilocybin as a “natural medicine.” In a bill he introduced last year, that term had a much broader meaning. Allowed mescaline, ibogaine, and Dimethyltryptamineor DMT, the psychoactive chemical in the ayahuasca drink, NFL quarterback Aaron Rodgers Consume on trips to Peru in 2020 and 2022.

Lovasco said he hopes limiting the proposal to psilocybin will make it more palatable to his colleagues.

“For the purposes of getting people into treatment, right now, psilocybin is the most studied, most proven, safest I think of the substances I’ve been aware of,” Lovasco said. “I think it’s the starting point that a lot of people feel comfortable with.”

Federal agencies are exploring when and how psychoactive substances can help treat mental health and substance abuse. In June, the head of the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration wrote to US Representative Madeline Dean that the Food and Drug Administration’s approval of psilocybin for depression was likely. within the next two years.

In the face of high rates of substance abuse and mental health issues “we must explore the potential of psychedelic-assisted therapies to address this crisis,” Miriam E. Delphine Rhytmon, Assistant Secretary of Mental Health and Substance Abuse, wrote to Dean.

More than 1,000 people commit suicide in Missouri each year, making the state 25% higher than the national average for suicides. The suicide rate among Missouri veterans is approx twice the state rate And one of the highest rates in the country.

An interim panel led by Rep. Dave Griffith, R-Jefferson City, found that one of the biggest barriers to preventing veteran suicides is a reluctance to seek treatment. The committee recommends strengthening 988 Suicide and Crisis HotlineIt requires an additional $27 million for the program.

During one hearing over the summer, Griffith said Tuesday before the House Committee on Health and Mental Health, the wife and daughter of a Springfield police officer and a National Guard colonel testified about his suicide.

“They knew he had issues, but they didn’t really want to bring it up because he was afraid of losing his job,” Griffiths said.

There are many studies showing the effectiveness of psilocybin in treating addiction, and last summer, a study showed that it contains The promise in controlling alcoholism.

Lovasco said that when he first decided to work on the bill, his goal was to make it a case for liberty. The high suicide rate in the state, and the high rate among veterans, make it a life-and-death issue.

He said two years or more for FDA approval is a long time to wait.

“People who have come back from the war, who are in dire need of care, many of whom will not be around in three years,” Lovasco said. “We have, what 20 veterans a day commit suicide? That’s an awful lot to lose while we wait for the government to do some paperwork.”

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