Oregon’s Higher Education Coordinating Commission (HECC) has licensed Fluence to train psilocybin facilitators under Measure 109
Fluence, an educational platform specializing in training and certification for psychedelic therapies, today announced that the State of Oregon has selected the company as a state-licensed provider of training for licensed facilitators to provide psilocybin services.
Oregon will be the first state in the United States to allow licensed professionals to provide psilocybin services at licensed Psilocybin Service Centers. Applications for Service Centers will be accepted starting January 2, 2023, and Oregon law requires that they be staffed by specialized licensed Psilocybin Facilitators. Other states, including Colorado and California, may not be far behind.
On November 3, 2020, Oregon voters passed The Oregon Psilocybin Services Act (Measure 109). Measure 109 allowed for licensure of Psilocybin Service Centers, after a two-year preparatory period running from January 1, 2021-December 31, 2022. These Service Centers must legally be staffed by facilitators who have received specialized training in the use of psilocybin. The specialized training must be approved and licensed by the Higher Education Coordinating Commission (HECC) and the Oregon Health Authority (OHA).
As of today, Fluence has obtained both of these approvals, making their Certificate in Psilocybin-Assisted Therapy a legal state-licensed Psilocybin Facilitator certification. Fluence’s program is designed by and for licensed psychotherapists.
Elizabeth Nielson, Ph.D., co-founder of Fluence said, “The licensing of Fluence’s Certificate in Psilocybin-Assisted Therapy from Oregon’s Higher Education Coordinating Commission (HECC) represents the first availability of a licensure-qualifying Psilocybin Facilitator training program anywhere in the world.”
Fluence’s Certificate in Psilocybin-Assisted Therapy
With today’s announced HECC licensing, the Fluence Certificate in Psilocybin-Assisted Therapy can now open enrollment to therapists who want to become facilitators of this powerful modality in Oregon. Fluence has a history of providing quality education about psychedelic-assisted therapy and Psychedelic Harm Reduction and Integration to licensed clinical professionals and advanced graduate students who work with patients.
“In alignment with Fluence’s mission to provide the highest quality professional education in psychedelic therapy to mental healthcare providers, our program is created and taught by leading psilocybin researchers and experienced psychedelic research therapists,” Dr. Nielson explained.
Founded in 2019 by Dr. Elizabeth Nielson and Dr. Ingmar Gorman, Fluence is an expertise-driven educational platform that has trained more than 1,500 practitioners in the past three years. Fluence works with licensed professionals and graduate students to give them the tools they need to provide effective, compassionate, evidence-based psychedelic therapy and integration services.
Fluence's certificate program includes 120 hours of instruction over the course of about 33 weeks. Participants will complete approximately 1.5 hours per week of self-paced study and meet weekly with a home group for 30 sessions. Participants will also attend a scheduled in-person training session to attend and complete 30 hours of live training over the course of 5 days. In-person sessions will be scheduled at least twice a year. After completing the 120-hour program, participants will be eligible for a 40-hour practicum experience.
This training program is licensed by the Oregon Higher Education Coordinating Commission. Graduates will be eligible to sit for the Psilocybin Facilitator’s Exam through the Oregon Health Authority.
The Therapeutic Value of Psilocybin
The Oregon Psilocybin Advisory Board conducted a review of the scientific literature about psilocybin and found strong evidence that the psilocybin compound (from “magic mushrooms”) is helpful for depression, anxiety, trauma, substance use disorders, and improving “spiritual well-being.”
In 2019, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) designated psilocybin therapy as a Breakthrough Therapy for two clinical programs of research studying the effects of psilocybin on severe depression and major depressive disorder. Because of promising early findings, the FDA designation was meant to "expedite the development and review of drugs that are intended to treat a serious condition.”
Regardless of the “breakthrough” status of psilocybin, the U.S. Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA) still classifies psilocybin as a Schedule I drug, meaning that they consider it to have “no currently accepted medical use and a high potential for abuse.” Cannabis is also classified by the DEA as schedule I. Because of this classification, its distribution is tightly controlled.
Unlike with cannabis, Oregon’s Measure 109 will not allow the client to take the psilocybin home. Psilocybin must be consumed at a licensed Service Center with a licensed Facilitator, and the client must be over the age of 21. The Service Center model requires a Preparation session in addition to the Administration session, and offers an optional Integration session. Only the Administration session is required to take place at a Service Center, but all three sessions must take place with a licensed facilitator.
“Fluence brings a history of experience training mental health professionals in research and community-based practice settings, and we look forward to supporting the growing field of psilocybin services in Oregon through this program. Our Diversity Fund scholarship program will offer support to this program as well, ensuring equitable access for candidates,” Dr. Nielson said.