The psychedelic industry is spawning a new generation of businesses aiming to revolutionize mental health care. High profile advocates such as Tim Ferriss are speaking out about the importance of investing in psychedelics and being transparent about it. In other words, businesses are getting ready to trip. One promising organization coming up to lead the charge is spearheaded by a woman psychedelic facilitator.
Businesses are Getting Ready to Trip
Recently, Fortune published an in-depth article about the businesses and organizations coming up in the psychedelic space. According to Tim Ferriss, “I view the next five years as an absolutely golden window…of opportunity.” Ferriss, angel investor and author of bestsellers such as The Four Hour Workweek, made headlines last year due to his generous support of the opening of the research center at John Hopkins dedicated to psychedelic medicine. Beyond his financial backing, he is also using his platform to give exposure to psychedelic researchers, medical doctors, authors, etc.
Like so many that are coming into the psychedelic space, Ferriss’ own personal experiences with psychedelics, psilocybin specifically, is the motivating force behind his efforts. In short, the industry has so much potential not only for financial gains but to impact the lives of so many people in positive, and even life-changing ways. Many who enter the psychedelic space can attest to that personally.
How to Ensure Accessibility Remains an Unknown
However, there are many conflicts arising in the space due to everything from the pervading stigma surrounding psychedelics to the logistics of patenting psychedelic substances. One of the biggest questions that remains unanswered as psychedelics come above ground surrounds accessibility–how to insure them so that they reach the most amount of people. According to sources within the industry, pharmaceutical companies may be getting ready to start taking psychedelics seriously.
One psychedelic company, in particular, is showing exceptional promise both in its sense of purpose as well as their business plan.
Flor Bollini, Founder of Nana
A psychedelic facilitator who trained within an African shamanic tradition, Maria Bollini (nickname Flor) is gearing up to flip the psychedelic industry on its head with her organization of clinics, Nana. The phrase is used in some African traditions to refer to a “smart healer” or priestess. Beyond psychedelic clinics, Flor intends to transform the current system of mental health care into a “transformative medicine” approach. One of the many projects she intends to build is “Nana in a box,” which is a web-based platform, and app, to support a free community of therapeutic facilities worldwide. Furthermore, the organization intends to train facilitators and create treatment plans for people with the aim of changing their lives for the better.
“The idea is that we take what I’ve learned, weave it all together with some adaptive reasoning, and create an integrated experience to help people radically transform their lives within six months,” she says.
Tim Ferriss compared Flor’s efforts to the American philanthropist, Katherine McCormick, who was instrumental in getting an oral contraceptive approved by the FDA in the 1950s. By marketing it to the FDA as a remedy for menstrual problems, that helped it to pass.
There are many fears grabbing hold of those in the psychedelic space about history repeating itself–science not keeping up with the hype, and institutional shutdown, for example–Ferriss brings McCormick up as an example of how to hack the system for everybody’s benefit. Like McCormick, Flor started with a modest sum of money and leveraged it to make an enduring impact.
Psychedelics Addressing the Mental Health Crisis
Mental health statistics are staggering. “Around 450 million people currently suffer from [mental and neurological disorders], placing mental disorders among the leading causes of ill-health and disability worldwide.” The data that is surfacing from research and science is just as remarkable and seems to be adding up to viable solutions. At least, in considering the efficacy of SSRIs, they show more promise than what we currently have.
With 133 clinics now open in the U.S. offering ketamine treatment for diagnoses related to mental health, the market demand for psychedelics indicates both the serious nature of our mental health crisis and how great the need for effective solutions is.
As Roland Griffiths, a legendary psychedelic researcher out of John Hopkins said, “I went into psychedelics as pretty much a skeptic…by no means did I think we would find what we have found.”