Despite the growing variety of available avenues for people to access psychedelics, traditional approaches to professional education only teach clinicians to define and diagnose negative consequences of psychedelic use, viewing any psychedelic use as abuse. PHRI offers an alternative to conventional therapeutic training by providing clinicians with tools for ethically integrating conversations about psychedelics into their existing practice.
According to the study authors, examples of individuals who might benefit from PHRI include: people who have used psychedelics on their own to try to resolve psychiatric symptoms; people who ingested psychedelics and are currently experiencing psychological distress; or people who intend to use psychedelics in therapeutic, ceremonial, or other contexts, but are unaware of the possible risks and contraindications.
“Many psychotherapists and other providers have encountered clients who use psychedelics already, but there hasn’t been a consistent approach to working with these individuals,” says Fluence co-founder Dr. Ingmar Gorman. “We’re hoping that this publication will start a conversation that’s been missing in the field, so that we can be most helpful to those who need us.”
PHRI involves supporting patients who use psychedelics without encouraging them to use psychedelics. PHRI does not involve the administration of psychedelics, or providing therapy during a psychedelic experience.
PHRI is not a treatment modality or technique, but serves as a perspective which therapists of all training backgrounds can incorporate into their practice. PHRI is intended to guide clinical work with people who have used psychedelics in a variety of contexts, including clinical therapies, spiritual practices, with peer groups, or on their own.
There is not yet empirical research about PHRI, and the study authors underscore that future research should focus on establishing standards and evaluating the efficacy of this approach when working with people who use or are considering using psychedelics.
The Frontiers in Psychiatry paper, “Psychedelic harm reduction and integration: A transtheoretical model for clinical practice,” was authored by Ingmar Gorman, Ph.D., Elizabeth M. Nielson, Ph.D., Aja Molinar, Ksenia Cassidy, and Jonathan Sabbagh. Drs. Gorman and Nielson are co-first authors.
Fluence is an expertise-driven educational platform that provides professional certification and training in psychedelic therapy and psychedelic integration for psychiatrists, psychotherapists, social workers, and other healthcare practitioners. Fluence’s mission is to give healthcare providers the clinical skills and knowledge to provide effective, compassionate, evidence-based psychedelic therapy and integration services to patients through dynamic, interactive online and in-person training.
· Article: View online (open access)
· Citation: Gorman I, Nielson EM, Molinar A, Cassidy K and Sabbagh J (2021) Psychedelic Harm Reduction and Integration: A Transtheoretical Model for Clinical Practice. Front. Psychol. 12:645246. doi: 10.3389/fpsyg.2021.645246