Psilocybin is a naturally occurring psychoactive compound found around the world in over 200 species of mushroom. Early research is showing that psilocybin has numerous potential treatment applications for mental and physical health conditions, including but not limited to smoking cessation, addiction, alcoholism, obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD), post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), end-of-life distress, treatment-resistant depression, anorexia nervosa, cluster headaches and chronic pain.
However, the UK government still classifies psilocybin as a Schedule 1 controlled 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 government to reschedule psilocybin to make it accessible for medical and scientific research. This could lead to the development of new therapies that could reduce the suffering of millions of people in the UK with conditions that currently have limited and inadequate treatment options.
The UK has a mental health crisis. We need to lift barriers to access of promising new medicines.
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 over six months is as effective in treating depression as taking an anti-depressant (escitalopram) daily.
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.
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.
Psilocybin could be a revolutionary medication, but scientists need to be able to study it
Despite research remaining near-prohibitively expensive for even the largest, most reputable research institutions, there is a considerable amount of scientific evidence indicating that psilocybin could be a game-changing treatment. Without further research however, its benefits remain inaccessible for suffering patients.
A selection of key findings from research to date includes:
A recent study found that psilocybin had a significantly greater impact on both thought suppression and rumination, in comparison to escitalopram. (Barba T., Buehler S., Kettner H. et al., 2022)
In one study, over half of study participants were in remission from their depression symptoms 12 months after only two doses. (Gukasyan N., Davis A. K., Barrett F. S., et al., 2022)
Psilocybin has proven effective in treating treatment-resistant depression, with 100% of study participants’ symptoms reduced one week after a single treatment, and 47% five weeks after. (Carhart-Harris, R.L., Roseman, L., Bolstridge, M. et al., 2017)
Psilocybin assisted therapy provides a breakthrough in the treatment of addiction. 80% of patients with chronic tobacco addiction were abstinent at 6 month follow-up (Johnson et al, 2014), 67% at 12 month follow up (Johnson et al, 2016), and 60% at 16 month follow up (Johnson et al, 2017)
Psilocybin assisted therapy was shown to be effective in the treatment of alcoholism, with the percentage of heavy drinking days post-treatment decreasing by over double the amount of an active placebo group. (Bogenschutz, M. P. et al, 2022)
Amongst individuals receiving end of life care for cancer, 80% found their anxiety had been significantly reduced after undergoing psilocybin assisted therapy. (Ross et al, 2016)
Obsessive Compulsive Disorder
Psilocybin reduced symptoms for 9 subjects with Obsessive Compulsive Disorder. (Moreno, FA, Wiegand, CB, Taitano, EK, et al, 2006)
Two large-scale population studies, each comprising over 130,000 US adults, found no evidence of an association between psilocybin use and mental health problems (Schlag AK, Aday J, Salam I, Neill JC, Nutt DJ, 2022)
Psilocybin carries a lower dependence risk than caffeine (Gable, 1993)
We are proud to be collaborating with these incredible organisations
Call for art submissions
Calling all artists and advocates!
The Psilocybin Access Rights Campaign cordially invites you to contribute your artwork for our upcoming gallery event on Magic Mushroom Day, which will take place on September 20, 2023. We are specifically looking for captivating and thought-provoking pieces that will help us raise awareness about the numerous benefits of psilocybin and emphasize the importance of ensuring access rights to it.
The chosen artworks will be prominently displayed at our exclusive gallery event and later put up for auction. The proceeds from the auction will be utilized to fund various campaign activities, including initiatives such as billboards and out-of-home media. Our objective is to draw attention to the cause and advocate strongly for psilocybin access rights.
To participate in the auction, kindly complete the submission form powered by Google. This form requires you to upload a sample of your artwork to our Google Drive. The sign-in process with Google is necessary for both verifying your human identity and preventing any potential malware from being uploaded to our drive.
For general queries, volunteer opportunities or press inquiries, please contact us using the form below.