The RAND Corporation issued a study of cannabis legalization in January in which the state was prominently featured, and a tax and regulate bill was introduced in February. Joseph “Chip” Troiano (D-Caledonia-2) introduced H. 387, an act relating to the dispensing of ibogaine for substance abuse treatment.
But now a bill has been introduced in the state’s House of Representatives that would create something far more radical than taxed and regulated cannabis: a pilot program to use ibogaine in the treatment of substance use disorders. The bill was referred to the House Committee on Human Services.
Different types of treatment will appeal to, and work better or worse for, different individuals.
Some people who use the substance report a lasting reversal of their addiction symptoms following treatment* and ibogaine’s reported benefits are immense, but it is not without risks.
Since, over the past few years, Vermont has become the synecdoche for national concerns over opioid use disorders, the state is looking to the controversial natural medicine as a potential way to mitigate the problem.
According to data from the 2012-13 National Survey on Drug Use and Health, Vermont ranks in the top tier of states for illicit drug use in the past month among individuals aged 12 or older, as well as illicit drug dependence in the past year among individuals aged 12 or older (among other measures).
As presently drafted, the bill would direct the Commissioner of Public Safety, in consultation with the Commissioner of Health, to develop and implement a three year pilot program to dispense ibogaine for the treatment of individuals addicted to drugs or alcohol.
To be eligible to participate, a person must be diagnosed with a severe and persistent substance abuse disorder by a health care provider in the course of a bona fide health care provider-patient relationship.