Oregon’s Psychedelic Path: What Coaches and Consumers Need to Know
It’s an exciting moment for the third wave of psychedelics: thanks to Measure 109, Oregon is slated to roll out legal facilitated psilocybin services around Q2 of 2023. Starting in July 2022, schools and facilitators will be able to undergo training to become a certified site and facilitator/coach. Being a certified coach allows you to administer at a certified site. Remote coaching and microdosing coaching remain prohibited. Moreover, despite strong advocacy, entheogenic and religious use was not given an exception.
Basics of Training
As of now (mid-June 2022), three key players have arisen in the training program space: InnerTrek, Synaptic Institute, and Fluence.
Both InnerTrek and Synaptic’s programs are open to therapists and non-therapists alike, while Fluence’s Postgraduate Certificate in Psilocybin-assisted Therapy is for licensed therapists who reside in Oregon and wish to obtain the training and education necessary to qualify to become a psilocybin facilitator under Oregon’s Measure 109.
The costs of these programs range between $8,000 and $10,500. Partial scholarship opportunities are available, though limited.
Each program has an application process, and spots are limited as cohorts are intentionally kept small to maximize the learning environment.
Based on the stipulations set by the Oregon Health Authority, the total training time must equal 120 hours, 50% of which is allowed to take place via remote, asynchronous learning. The curriculum must include the following categories:
- Historical, Traditional, and Contemporary Practices and Applications of Psychedelics;
- Cultural Equity in relation to Psilocybin Services;
- Safety, Ethics, and Responsibilities;
- Psilocybin Pharmacology, Neuroscience, and Clinical Research;
- Core Facilitation Skills;
- Preparation and Orientation;
- Integration; and
- Group Facilitation.
Additionally, the OHA guidelines state that “students must complete a minimum of 40 hours of practicum training, including at least 30 hours of direct practice in which students directly observe clients receiving psilocybin services or directly participate in alternative practicum activity [such as altered states of consciousness achieved through breathwork], and at least 10 hours of consultation relating to the student’s direct practice.”
Notably, the first cohort of students undergoing training in 2022 will not be able to actually work with psilocybin in their practicum, as Measure 109 does not come into effect until 2023.
So When Can I Do Mushrooms?
On January 2, 2023, the OHA will start accepting applications for licensed psilocybin service centers. As a result, certified sites likely won’t be operational until late spring. At that time, individuals seeking psilocybin therapy will be able to go to registered sites for individual or group facilitated experiences. They will not be able to access these services remotely.
Anyone over the age of 21 is welcome to visit a psilocybin service center in Oregon, and do an initial consultation, regardless of their state of residence. However, the service centers will have a screening process and those who are not qualified for psychedelic work for medical or psychological reasons will be turned away.
Licensed sites will be permitted to administer whichever dose they deem appropriate, which could theoretically include microdoses; however, the dose must be consumed on the premises (including microdoses). Microdosing continues to be an area of controversy within the Oregon Psilocybin Advisory Board.
All in all, there are many rules and regulations around the so-called legalization of psilocybin in Oregon. Pioneers must proceed with caution. However, the hope is that with greater access to this therapy and more research, the third wave of psychedelics will continue to gain momentum, paving the way for more reforms nationwide.