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Patient hopes Canada will introduce regulations for treatment with ‘magic mushrooms’

As the first terminally ill cancer patient in Canada to legally use so-called magic mushrooms to treat anxiety, Thomas Hartle is hopeful that more temporary approvals from the federal government signal a permanent regulatory regime may be in the works.

Hartle, 53, received a one-year exemption from the Controlled Drugs and Substances Act last August to use psilocybin, the active ingredient in magic mushrooms, during psychotherapy.

Since then, Health Canada has approved 24 more applications from cancer patients for treatment of end-of-life distress. It has also granted exemptions to 19 health-care providers, giving them the right to possess and use mushrooms containing psilocybin for professional training purposes, a spokeswoman said in a statement.

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