'Psychedelic renaissance'

Health Minister Ginette Petitpas Taylor is being urged to support broad research for the use of psychedelic drugs for medical treatments.

Canadian researchers say psychedelic therapies have shown clear scientific promise for treating conditions including post-traumatic stress, end-of-life anxiety, mental health and addiction.

Mark Haden, an adjunct professor at the University of British Columbia, says there is a "psychedelic renaissance" underway in the research community, adding it is pressing for Ottawa to look at funding science into alternative therapies for patients.

Haden and other researchers support a House of Commons petition, sponsored by Liberal MP Nathaniel Erskine-Smith, calling for the minister to explore multi-year funding on psychedelic research projects at hospitals and universities.

Erskine-Smith says it is important to explore treatments that could help Canadians suffering from mental health issues.

A spokesperson for Petitpas Taylor says the Canadian Institutes of Health Research previously authorized a clinical trial involving MDMA — a psychedelic substance commonly known as ecstasy.

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