Oregonians voted to make psilocybin, the active ingredient in magic mushrooms, legal for regulated use in 2020. University studies showed that just one trip could help patients quit drinking or taking drugs, lift them out of depression, and help them face death with grace.
But anyone expecting psychedelics therapists to pop like mushrooms after a soaking rain are mistaken, says Cathy Rosewell Jonas in an interview with Willamette Week.
The byzantine regulations around psilocybin require fortitude, patience, and cash. She would know. She’s one of the first people in Oregon to try and navigate them, and she’s been putting out candid progress reports on YouTube under the name of her practice, EPIC Healing Eugene.
From the post:
One of the biggest criticisms of Oregon’s psilocybin program, run by the Oregon Health Authority, is that guided therapy sessions will be unaffordable for most people because of the costs involved. Jonas’ experience confirms that. If she manages to open her service center, she says she’ll have to charge $3,000 a session to break even. “I’m not trying to make money.”
Jonas’ expenses started with the $9,000 she paid for facilitator training. That wrapped up last weekend. But becoming a facilitator is a bargain compared with opening a service center. Applying to open one costs $500. The annual license fee is $10,000. Jonas got a bid for liability insurance recently: $12,000. She expects to spend $4,500 on security cameras and a service to monitor the system. She will have to pay another facilitator to be on call during psychedelic sessions, in case she has to step out for any reason.
The rules are nothing if not thorough. Service centers must have safes for storing psilocybin. “‘Safe’ means a fireproof metal cabinet with a mechanical or electronic combination lock that is capable of storing psilocybin products and weighs at least 375 pounds,” OHA’s rules say.