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We are PAR,

a group of volunteers campaigning for psilocybin access rights in the UK.

We are calling on UK government to reschedule psilocybin and make it accessible for patients and researchers.

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Psilocybin is a naturally occurring compound found in over 200 species of fungi across the world.

Early research shows that psilocybin has numerous potential treatment applications in mental and physical health, including but not limited to depression, chronic pain, anorexia nervosa, tobacco and other addictions, alcoholism, obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD), post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), cluster headaches and end-of-life distress.

It is consistently found to be one of the safest controlled drugs, is physiologically non-toxic, non-addictive and when used in a controlled environment by trained professionals risks can be reduced to an absolute minimum.

key findings

The Opportunity

A breakthrough for depression
 

1.2 million British residents are estimated to be living with treatment-resistant depression.
 

Depression is the greatest contributing factor to suicide and the leading cause of disability.

Antidepressant use has doubled in

England the last 10 years.

Research has shown that two doses of psilocybin with psychotherapy is as effective in treating depression as taking an anti-depressant (escitalopram) daily for six months.

A breakthrough for addiction
 

£36 billion is spent by the nation every year on treatment relating to drug and alcohol abuse.
 

It is estimated that drugs cost UK society £10.7 billion a year in policing, healthcare, and crime.
 

Research is showing that a single dose of psilocybin combined with psychotherapy could be effective in treating addictions to alcohol, tobacco, and stimulants.

A breakthrough for our NHS
 

1 in every 10 pounds of the NHS budget is spent on mental illness, which in total costs the UK economy £100 billion per annum ~ 4.1% of GDP.
 

More than 50% of ICU staff are suffering from either suicidal thoughts and/or alcohol dependence following the trauma of covid and are at risk of leaving the NHS.
 

Our front line workers, emergency services and veterans need access to treatments that work.

The issue

Psilocybin was first controlled in 1971 without a shred of evidence and over 50 years later the UK government has never reviewed the evidence of it's harm and utility. 

 

Psilocybin is designated a Schedule 1 substance implying that it has "no medical value".
 

This significantly hinders research and the pace at which the medicine can be made accessible to those who need it.
 

We are calling on the UK government to review the evidence, reschedule psilocybin and make it accessible for researchers and doctors to prescribe to patients who could benefit.
 

This could lead to the development of new therapies and could reduce the suffering of millions of people in the UK with limited and inadequate treatment options.

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Psilocybin assisted therapy could be a revolution in mental health care, but scientists need to be able to study it and patients need access.

It is now available for adults in Oregon (USA), and patients by prescription in Australia and Canada.

In the UK research is near-prohibitively expensive for even the largest, most reputable research institutions due to the need for Schedule 1 licenses from the government, and even though there is considerable evidence indicating that psilocybin could be a life-saving treatment, doctors are unable to prescribe it .

While psilocybin remains in Schedule 1 its benefits remain inaccessible for suffering patients in the UK.

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