Hawaii has joined other jurisdictions in the exploration of psilocybin (commonly known as Magic Mushrooms) as an antidepressant. Two Hawaii legislators recently proposed measures that could see psilocybin products become legal. The plan seeks to explore these psychedelics mushrooms to determine their health benefits.
This is not the first time that someone has called for the legalization of psychedelics. Other U.S. states have also shown interest in testing the effectiveness of psychedelic substances and the first research clinic in New York City was opened.
If the Hawaii lawmakers are successful, psilocybin products will be approved for medical use. Rep. Chris Lee and Sen. Les Ihara Junior proposed the opening of a research center spearheaded by relevant experts including medical experts, drug policy advocates, and state officials. They would be tasked with conducting studies and taking note of any proven health impacts of psilocybin.
The ultimate goal is to come up with safe psychedelic mushroom products for medicinal use and not any other use. Some of the mental illnesses being targeted include anxiety, addiction, depression, PTSD, and psychological distress.
Over the years, there’ve been scientific reports pointing towards the possibility of psychedelic mushrooms as the perfect cure for mental disorders.
A good example of a research center that is at the forefront of studying psychedelics is run by John Hopkins Medicine. Its main objective is to explore innovative treatments for diseases by the use of psychedelic substances as medicine.
A statement by the Food and Drug Administration (“FDA”) indicates their recognition of magic mushrooms as a potential therapeutic medicine: “Preliminary Clinical evidence indicates that psilocybin may develop substantial improvement over available therapies for major depressive disorders and severe treatment-resistant depression.”
So far, the FDA has granted two psilocybin-based treatments ‘breakthrough therapy’ status in the treatment of depressive disorder and other forms of depression that seem untreatable. That’s a win considering that the U.S. has marked compounds present in magic mushrooms as unsafe or of no medical value.
The current resolutions in Hawaii are signs of changes that may occur in the future concerning the legalization of psychedelic substances across the country. For instance, lawmakers in Vermont filed a bill to legalize three psychedelic substances: magic mushrooms, peyote, and ayahuasca. In Oregon, activists are working on a plan to have psilocybin legalized by lobbying for signatures. Activists in Washington, D.C. and California are already working on the same.
So far, a few U.S. city have been successful in having some psychedelics decriminalized. These are Oakland, Denver and Santa Cruz. From the look of things, other cities may follow suit.
Another reform that lawmakers in Hawaii seek to change is removing felony charges against persons found in possession of ‘low-level’ drug offenses. These winds of change are likely to give psychedelics companies like Eleusis Ltd. The encouragement that they need to press ahead with research into these hitherto ostracized substances.
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