Missouri residents with terminal or debilitating conditions may soon be able to access psychedelics under a new bill.
Missouri residents with terminal or debilitating conditions may soon be able to access psychedelic therapies under a new bill.
Kansas City Republican Rep. Michael Davis introduced the bill to broaden the state’s newly inked “Right to Try” legislation. That law gives patients and their doctors the ability to procure therapies that have not yet received FDA approval, provided the drug maker agrees to provide the product.
Davis’ bill will permit terminally ill patients with no other treatment options access to psychedelic therapies like LSD and psilocybin. Psychedelics are classified as Schedule 1 drugs in Missouri and are currently illegal. The bill also calls for removing felony penalties for simple possession of psychedelics and reclassifying smaller offenses to misdemeanors.
“Many psychedelic drugs have decades of clinical research supporting their efficacy and safety profiles, yet the FDA has been slow to act to reschedule these drugs,” Davis said in a statement. “My proposal protects the liberty interests of Missourians who believe these drugs offer valuable options in the treatment of numerous conditions, and, importantly, aligns Missouri law with federal law with respect to investigational drug access.”
Benefits of psychedelics therapy
Research has shown psychedelic therapy successful at treating depression, suicidal thoughts, traumatic disorders, addictions, as well as end-of-life distress. “This bill has the potential to provide hope to people suffering from life-threatening and debilitating conditions,” therapist Michael VanderWaal said.
Missouri is the third state to adopt Right to Try legislation behind Colorado and Louisiana. Arizona-based policy group, the Goldwater Institute, has been pushing the legislation across the country. The organization says consumers are entitled to access to investigational drugs. Critics say without prior FDA vetting, experimental drugs pose risks.
It's unclear whether Missouri lawmakers will pass the bill. The state’s track record isn’t promising. In 2018, Republican Rep. Dr. Jim Neeley proposed legislation to expand Right to Try to allow access to medical marijuana. The legislation was approved by the Missouri House of Representatives, but did not pass the Missouri Senate.