Psychedelic medicines

Psychedelic medicines are medicines that contain psychedelic substances, such as 3,4-methylenedioxy-methamphetamine (MDMA) and psilocybin.

Some psychedelic medicines are classed as Schedule 8 (Controlled Medicines) in certain circumstances, specifically:

  • MDMA for management of post-traumatic stress disorder
  • Psilocybin for management of treatment-resistant depression

In all other circumstances, MDMA and psilocybin remain Schedule 9 (Prohibited Substances).

Psychedelic medicines prescriber approvals

In the ACT, psychedelic medicines can only be prescribed by psychiatrists who have applied and received approval from the ACT Chief Health Officer (CHO) to prescribe these medicines.

CHO approval will be granted under Chapter 7 of the Medicines, Poisons and Therapeutic Goods Controlled Medicines Prescribing Standards (2023) only if the applying psychiatrist has specialist registration with AHPRA and has:

  • become an Authorised Prescriber under the Therapeutic Goods Administration Authorised Prescriber Scheme
  • received approval from a Human Research Ethics Committee
  • undertaken education on psychedelic-assisted therapy.

Supply of psychedelic medicines

In the ACT, all administration of MDMA and psilocybin-containing products must occur under directly supervised dosing, as part of psychedelic-assisted therapy, and under the supervision of the psychiatrist who has received CHO approval to prescribe.

This means MDMA and psilocybin-containing products cannot be supplied to patients for unsupervised dosing or future use.

As of August 2023, there are no MDMA- or psilocybin-containing products listed on the Australian Register of Therapeutic Goods. The importation of MDMA and psilocybin is prohibited unless the importer holds a licence and permit issued by the Office of Drug Control.

More information on accessing MDMA and psilocybin for therapeutic purposes is available from the Office of Drug Control Webpage.

Further information:

Page last updated on: 22 Aug 2023