Over a year since opening the ATMA Calgary Urban Journey Clinic, Alberta is set to become the first Canadian province to regulate the use of psychedelic drugs as a way to treat those who struggle with their mental health.

From ensuring that patients receive appropriate care to preventing the mismanagement of certain products, this decision is meant to protect the public, while also allowing therapists to offer an alternative treatment to their patients.

“The evidence is emerging that psychedelic-assisted therapy holds a lot of promise in treating mental health issues like PTSD and treatment-resistant depression,” said Mike Ellis, Associate Minister of Mental Health and Addictions.

“In order to fully realize the potential of this emerging field, we must have high standards of care in place to protect Albertans accessing care and ensure the legitimacy of the therapy.”

These standards of care, ensure that the following requirements are met before offering psilocybin, psilocin, MDMA, LSD, mescaline, DMT or ketamine:

  • Clinics providing psychedelic drug treatment must be licensed under the Mental Health Services Protection Act and appoint a psychiatrist to serve as medical director.
  • Only a psychiatrist, or an appropriately trained physician in consultation with a psychiatrist, can prescribe psychedelic drugs used in treatment.
  • Patients undergoing psychedelic drug treatments that induce an altered state of consciousness must be monitored by qualified health professionals for the duration of their treatment session.

“Alberta is the first province to identify and understand that psychedelics are the future area of treatment for so many Canadians struggling with mental health,” said Dr. Robert Tanguay co-chair of Alberta Pain Strategy.

“There is an opportunity for Alberta to be a leader in this field, and this begins by recognizing the need to protect anyone undergoing these treatments. It’s incredible to see Alberta leading the way in psychedelic-assisted therapy by making sure Albertans are protected and working on improving access to care.”

For more information on how Alberta is regulating the use of psychedelic drugs, please visit the Government’s official website here.