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Study Offers Insights on Colorado’s Plans to Monitor, Regulate Psychedelics

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The state of Colorado is pioneering the way once more as government leaders figure out how to establish and regulate the nascent psychedelics industry. The state was the first to legalize the recreational use of marijuana.

This latest move comes after Colorado became one of the first states in the country to legalize psychedelic drugs and establish policy around their therapeutic use.

Denver Health and Hospital Authority’s Joshua Black stated that while psychedelics had been used for millennia, this was the first time the substances were being approved for use by trained practitioners. Black is a senior research scientist at the Rocky Mountain Poison and Drug Safety Division.

Investigators are set to gain access to new data on psychedelic substances, with research by Black’s team providing suggestions on how Colorado as well as other states could gather and study this data in the future. Black explained that his team’s focus was ensuring that the right data was being collected so that future decisions on the effectiveness and safety of these drugs could be made in a way that maximized their benefit while minimizing potential harm.

In the study, whose findings were reported in “Nature Mental Health,” team members suggested that the following be tracked:

  • If a patient was on any other medications at the time of treatment using psychedelics or if they had any comorbidities.
  • A patient’s motivation for using psychedelic drugs.
  • Whether the psychedelic administered produced an adverse effect or the intended effect, ad whether the patient presented with any concerning symptoms.
  • The training and experience of the provider who was administering the treatment.

In his statement, Black revealed that his team observed that rare events in smaller populations became more frequent as the populations grew. He gave the example of cyclical vomiting, which they observed became more frequent following the legalization of marijuana in the state.

At present, the Rocky Mountain Poison and Drug Safety Division is focused on collecting its own data and conducting a focus group with individuals who have used psychedelic substances to treat a mental-health condition.

The researchers’ objective is to understand the psychedelic experience and inform future research on the drugs. Overall, the state is refining its regulations for the industry and is planning to take applications for facilitators by this year’s end.

Other states that have psilocybin industries include Oregon, which has legalized psilocybin treatment facilities. These facilities are already serving patients with a range of mental illnesses.

Start-ups such as Mind Medicine Inc. (NASDAQ: MNMD) (NEO: MMED) (DE: MMQ) will likely follow developments in Colorado to see what systems are put in place to monitor and regulate psychedelic use since it could set a precedent that other jurisdictions follow.

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