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Resources and FAQs

Oregon Health Authority – What are Psilocybin Services?

This page is still under construction, please be aware that this content may change.

Frequently Asked Questions:

Q: What does Psilocybin Facilitation under Oregon’s Measure 109 involve?

A: There are three phases, which are preparation, administration (dosing or journey day), and integration (follow-up). Some amount of preparation is required in order to do a psilocybin administration day. Facilitators are required to offer an integration meeting after administration, to support you in connecting your psilocybin experiences to the ongoing changes you hope to make. I strongly recommend attending an integration meeting, but clients are not required by law to do so. On administration day, you must be located at an Oregon licensed Psilocybin Service Center. Your facilitator will remain with you during your journey to help keep you safe physically and to help create a supportive environment where you can feel safe to explore the non-ordinary state of consciousness brought on by psilocybin; the amount of time we spend together will depend on the dosage you choose during preparation.

Q: How do you think about psilocybin services in historical context?

A: While psilocybin is present in mushrooms that grow in many places around the world, and all human brains have the receptors to be activated by psilocybin and psilocin, it is important to acknowledge that the practice of supported use for spiritual or well-being purposes comes from a Mazatec tradition. It is true that the US’s history with psilocybin has been extractive and harmful to indigenous groups, and approaches to psychedelics in modern history have also at times been harmful to other marginalized groups. Participants in the Oregon program can work with this by 1) being aware of history, 2) practicing humility about their own relationship to plant medicines, and 3) paying respect to indigenous cultures’ contributions. I do not pretend to emulate indigenous practices, however I hold them in high esteem. Providing safe, ethical support with high reverence for the power of the medicine is what connects these past traditions with current use in the Oregon model; I’m grateful to be able to be a part of this.

Q: What is your approach to supporting clients whose backgrounds differ from your own?

A: Most of my identities are privilege-holding. I make an effort to stay aware of how this experience might impact my worldview, as well as how a history of marginalization as an individual or as a group impacts a person’s sense of safety in the world. I work to de-center my own worldview and become attuned with my clients’. All that we each (client and facilitator) carry with us can become part of the set and setting of the psilocybin experience. Therefore, it is important to acknowledge identities and how differences or similarities could impact trust. I will work to earn your trust and if clients feel barriers are too great to build trust, I can assist by helping you find another facilitator.

Q: Do you provide psilocybin-assisted psychotherapy?

A: In the Oregon model, psilocybin facilitation is a service, not a therapy. You do not need a prescription and it is not considered a treatment. There is a growing body of scientific literature that suggests psilocybin can have beneficial effects for some people with mental health conditions, but there are no guarantees of any particular outcome.

Q: Do I need a prescription or referral from a physician?

A: No. The Oregon model of psilocybin services does not require a prescription or physician referral, and it is not considered a medical treatment. However, I strongly recommend that you have care established with a physician and a mental health care provider.

Q: How much will this cost?

A: Some costs will depend on your unique plans and needs, such as how much preparation time you might need, the service center location you choose and the travel this may require, etc. I can provide you with a highly specific estimate of costs once I better understand your needs and plans. People with economic hardship are welcome to discuss possible lower cost options.

Q: Can my therapist (or family member, or dog, etc) be there with me during my psilocybin journey?

A: Additional parties are only allowed under highly specific conditions, such as if you use a medical device that requires specialized monitoring during the journey. Pets and individuals under age 21 are never allowed in a service center.

Q: Can we be outdoors during the psilocybin journey?

A: This will depend on the Oregon-licensed psilocybin service center you choose. Not all of them offer outdoor spaces. Your administration session must take place on the premises of an Oregon psilocybin service center.

Q: Do you offer group facilitation?

A: Small group experiences can be an excellent way to improve sense of community and other meaningful factors around your journey. It can also be a good way to save money, for clients who are a good fit for group work. I am happy to work with groups, depending on the specific circumstances. Oregon’s regulations make stipulations about both the size of a space required at a service center for group work, as well as the ratio of clients to facilitators. I can provide more information about this when I know more about your situation.

Q: Will my insurance cover my work with you?

A: I am not aware of any insurance carriers offering coverage at this time. Under the Oregon model, since it is not considered a medical or mental health treatment, it is unlikely that any insurers would be willing to cover this cost.

Q: Is this legal?

A: This is legal under Oregon State law. I will adhere to all state regulations. At the time of this writing (Oct, 2023), psilocybin is still a schedule I substance with the federal government, which means that psilocybin manufacture, distribution, and possession are prohibited at the federal level.