At the end of last week, legislators from Maryland send a bill which would create a state fund to fund cost-free access to psychedelics for military veterans suffering from brain injury and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) to the governor’s desk.
The bill was introduced by Sen. Sarah Elfreth (D) and the Senate voted 46-0 in favor of the bill last month. On Friday last week, the House of Delegates voted 135-0 in favor of the bill briefly after committee consideration and a second reading in the chamber.
The psychedelic bill will enable establishment of ‘Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder and Traumatic Brain Injury Alternative Therapies Fund’. The funds will be used to conduct research studies on use of alternative therapies for veterans with PTSD and traumatic brain injuries.
The Senate bill advanced to the governor’s office seeks to provide cost-free access to psychedelics for eligible veterans. According to the bill, the state Department of Health will be required to periodically consult with the Department of Veterans Affairs, John Hopkins University, the University of Maryland, Sheppard Pratt hospital and the Walter Reed National Military Medical Center.
The aim of these partnerships will be to determine the effectiveness of and a method for improving access to alternative therapies for treating PTSD and traumatic brain injury in veterans. The involved parties will also consult on appropriate uses of the fund that further the fund’s purpose.
However, the department is required to submit a report to the governor and legislation with initial findings and recommendations on or before December 1, 2022. Subsequently, after two years, it will submit another findings and recommendations which will be based on studies which were specifically funded through the PTSD fund.
According to the bill, the above recommendations would focus on ‘budgetary, legislative, or regulatory changes to expand access to alternative therapies for veterans with post–traumatic stress disorder and traumatic brain injuries.