Cancer Healthcare Workers’ Perceptions toward Psychedelic-Assisted Therapy: A Preliminary Investigation

Show simple item record Reynolds, Lisa M Akroyd, Amelia Sundram, Frederick Stack, Aideen Muthukumaraswamy, Suresh Evans, William J 2021-09-15T21:58:19Z 2021-09-15T21:58:19Z
dc.identifier.citation International journal of environmental research and public health 18(15) 02 Aug 2021
dc.description.abstract <jats:p>Recent clinical trials suggest that psychedelic-assisted therapy is a promising intervention for reducing anxiety and depression and ameliorating existential despair in advanced cancer patients. However, little is known about perceptions toward this treatment from the key gatekeepers to this population. The current study aimed to understand the perceptions of cancer healthcare professionals about the potential use of psychedelic-assisted therapy in advanced cancer patients. Twelve cancer healthcare professionals including doctors, nurses, psychologists and social workers took part in a semi-structured interview which explored their awareness and perceptions toward psychedelic-assisted therapy with advanced cancer patients. Data were analysed using thematic analysis. Four inter-connected themes were identified. Two themes relate to the role and responsibility of being a cancer healthcare worker: (1) ‘beneficence: a need to alleviate the suffering of cancer patients’ and (2) ‘non-maleficence: keeping vulnerable cancer patients safe’, and two themes relate specifically to the potential for psychedelic-assisted therapy as (3) ‘a transformative approach with the potential for real benefit’ but that (4) ‘new frontiers can be risky endeavours’. The findings from this study suggest intrigue and openness in cancer healthcare professionals to the idea of utilising psychedelic-assisted therapy with advanced cancer patients. Openness to the concept appeared to be driven by a lack of current effective treatment options and a desire to alleviate suffering. However, acceptance was tempered by concerns around safety and the importance of conducting rigorous, well-designed trials. The results from this study provide a useful basis for engaging with healthcare professionals about future research, trial design and potential clinical applications.</jats:p>
dc.language en
dc.publisher MDPI AG
dc.relation.ispartofseries International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health
dc.rights Items in ResearchSpace are protected by copyright, with all rights reserved, unless otherwise indicated. Previously published items are made available in accordance with the copyright policy of the publisher.
dc.title Cancer Healthcare Workers’ Perceptions toward Psychedelic-Assisted Therapy: A Preliminary Investigation
dc.type Journal Article
dc.identifier.doi 10.3390/ijerph18158160
pubs.issue 15
pubs.begin-page 8160
pubs.volume 18 2021-08-04T03:15:51Z
dc.rights.holder Copyright: The author en
pubs.end-page 8160
pubs.publication-status Published online
dc.rights.accessrights en
pubs.elements-id 861646
dc.identifier.eissn 1660-4601 2021-8-2

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