Introductory Workshop for Clinicians on Psychedelic-Assisted Therapies

The Australian National University School of Medicine and Psychology and Mind Medicine Australia are delighted to present a half-day Introductory Clinicians’ Workshop on Psychedelic-Assisted Therapies with Dr Ben Sessa (UK).

Dr Sessa has been at the forefront of psychedelic research for over 15 years through his affiliations with Bristol University and Imperial College London, under the auspices of Professor David Nutt. He brings a wealth of knowledge to this fast developing field in Australia.

In this workshop, Dr Sessa (UK) will explore how psychedelic-assisted therapy works by explaining:

  • Neuropharmacology of MDMA and psilocybin and dosing protocols
  • Preparing the therapist + facility/clinic
  • What to expect / how to be ready
  • Key features of the “set and setting”
  • The “patient journey”
  • Patient selection (inclusion and exclusion criteria, when to know that PAT might be the most appropriate next option)
  • Obtaining consent (key concepts / risks to explain)
  • Supportive care during drug tapering
  • Preparation sessions
  • Treatment sessions
  • Appropriate behaviours
  • Managing edge cases
  • Key differences to standard therapy approaches
  • Managing integration

Who is this workshop for?

This workshop is for any healthcare professional who wants to learn more about the rapidly emerging field of psychedelic medicine and the use of psychedelic-assisted therapies in clinical practice. This is a rare opportunity to learn from a global clinician and researcher in the field. It will provide you with knowledge and skills to more effectively educate your clients and colleagues about these newly available transformational therapies.

It is of even greater value for those who are interested in transitioning to work in the psychedelic medicine space now or in the future.

About Dr Ben Sessa (UK), Psychiatrist, Researcher and Writer

For over 15 years Dr Ben Sessa has been at the forefront of psychedelic and cannabis research and clinical medicine in the UK through his affiliations with Imperial College London. Ben qualified as a medical doctor from UCL in 1997 and went on to specialise in psychiatry. For 25 years he has worked as a consultant child and adolescent psychiatrist with young people and adult patients in the field of addictions and trauma-related psychiatry.

Ben started studying psychedelics as a junior doctor and has taken part in research projects at Bristol University, Cardiff University and Imperial College London with LSD, psilocybin, DMT, ketamine and MDMA – receiving and/or administering all of these compounds in legal research settings.

One of the first doctors to develop the field of contemporary psychedelic research in the UK, he was the former co-founder, former CEO, and subsequently the former Head of Psychedelic Medicine at Awakn Life Sciences, a Bio-Tech company carrying out psychedelic research into addictions. Awakn opened four clinical centres in the U.K. and Europe, providing psychedelic psychotherapy with ketamine, for a wide range of psychiatric indications, as well as an extensive R&D psychedelic research program.

Ben was one of the first Medical Cannabis psychiatric prescribers in the UK.

Ben is a trained MDMA, ketamine and psilocybin therapist. He has led research into MDMA-assisted therapy for Alcohol Use Disorder and is published widely in the academic and medical press.

Ben is the co-founder and past president of the Breaking Convention conference. He is the author of The Psychedelic Renaissance (2012/2017), the novel ‘To Fathom Hell or Soar Angelic’ (2015) and Altered States (2021). Ben lives and works in Bristol, UK.

About Mind Medicine Australia

Mind Medicine Australia is Australia’s leading not-for-profit organisation working on the use of medicinal psilocybin and MDMA-assisted therapies to treat a range of mental illnesses. Mind Medicine Australia exists to help alleviate the suffering and suicides caused by our accelerating mental illness epidemic in Australia, through expanding the treatment options available to medical practitioners and their patients.