Psychedelics and Nursing: History, Healing, and the Oregon Psilocybin Frontier - Online Course


Psychedelic assisted therapy (PAT) has received significant attention in recent years, including publication of FDA registry trials in major medical journals, yet many nurses are unfamiliar with the modality. This webinar comes from two nurses at the forefront of developing psychedelic applications and therapy.

Melanie Velez, DNP, BSN, RN, PMHNP will discuss the Oregon initiative where psilocybin experiences are now available for clients in their communities. Andrew Penn, MS, PMHNP will review the science and evidence emerging from clinical trials. Nurses, with an orientation towards safety, presence, and equity, are well positioned to increase access to PAT and to provide expert care. They will discuss potential future pathways where patients may receive these treatments in the future, including medicalized settings and states where decriminalization has opened up access to these compounds for clients.

This course will retire after 25th October 2026.

Learning Outcomes:
After participating in this course, learners will be able to:

  • Review history of nurses' role in the uses of psychedelics in research, mental health, and addiction treatment
  • Identify core nursing qualities essential for psychedelic facilitators
  • Develop a deeper understanding of legal and ethical concerns for clients asking about psychedelics
  • Consider how nurses can both reduce risk and improve benefits from "therapeutic" psychedelic experiences and establishing thoughtful cultural norms

Speaker Bios:

Melanie Vélez DNP, PMHNP, BSN, RN
Melanie King Kawashima Velez is a ketamine-assisted therapist/prescriber and a community psychiatric mental health nurse practitioner treating lifespan psychiatry and addictions. Her post-doctoral training focused on psychedelic-assisted psychotherapy and research at the California Institute of Integral Studies CPTR program, Temenos Center for Integrative Psychotherapy, & Polaris Insight Center. Melanie is an instructor at Subtle Winds Psilocybin Facilitator Training program. For the past two decades she has offered volunteer psychedelic peer support in Oregon.

Andrew Penn, MS, NP, PMHNP-BC
Andrew Penn, MS, PMHNP is a psychiatric nurse practitioner, clinical professor at UCSF, and a researcher on psychedelic therapies in nursing. He has published widely on psychedelic therapies and their intersections with nursing and is the cofounder of the Organization of Psychedelic and Entheogenic Nurses ( An internationally invited speaker, he teaches on psychopharmacology and psychedelic therapies and can be found at

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