A new rule passed by The Therapeutic Goods Administration (TGA) will lawfully allow psychologists in Australia to prescribe MDMA and Psilocybin to their patients.
The drugs will be removed from the Poisons Standard prohibited substances to the controlled medicines classification and psychologists will be able to prescribe them from July 1st for the treatment resistant depression and treatment resistant posttraumatic stress disorder.
Only psychiatrists who are approved under the Authorised Prescriber Scheme by the TGA will be able to prescribe the drugs, and the approval will require assessment by a human research ethics committee.
Australian charity Mind Medicine Australia pushed for the drugs to be allowed to be legally prescribed last year.
“We are delighted with the decision which will be welcomed by so many suffering Australians. The decision 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,” Chairman of Mind Medicine Australia, Peter Hunt AM said.
“While not yet a medicine registered on the Therapeutic Goods Register, this decision will enable appropriately screened patients with treatment resistant depression and treatment resistant post-traumatic stress disorder to access these medicinal therapies through authorised psychiatrists,” he added.
Psilocybin is known by it’s street name of magic mushrooms and has long been discussed as a potentially positive psychedelic in the treatment of mental health
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In 2021, a team of researchers at Melbourne’s Monash University last month became the first in the world to be given ethics approval for the clinical study of psilocybin as a treatment for Generalised Anxiety Disorder (GAD). A severe form of anxiety, it involves chronic worry and fear that happens on a day-to-day basis for at least six months.
“The treatment duration is only seven weeks but participants’ involvement in the trial is about six months, with assessments before, during and after the treatment phase,” Paul Liknaitzky, head go clinical psychedelic research at Monash told Vice prior to the commencement of the trial. The trial is currently in phase two.
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