Veterans Exploring Treatment Solutions (VETS), a leading nonprofit organization dedicated to addressing the ongoing epidemic of veteran suicide and mental health issues, is pleased to announce the publication of the first-ever scientifically validated scales for measuring psychedelic integration. The publication’s lead co-authors are members of VETS’ trained staff of experienced psychedelic integration coaches.
Published on May 23 in the leading journal Frontiers in Psychology, the study, titled “The Psychedelic Integration Scales: Tools for Measuring Psychedelic Integration Behaviors and Experiences,” was authored by VETS integration coaches Tomas Frymann and Sophie Whitney, along with fellow researchers David B. Yaden, Ph.D., and Joshua Lipson.
The authors define psychedelic integration as the process by which a psychedelic experience translates into positive changes in daily life. Integration takes place immediately after a psychedelic experience, as well as in the following weeks and months, depending on desired therapeutic outcomes.
While experts in the psychedelic field agree on the importance of integration, practices necessarily diverge depending on individual patient needs and provider styles, resulting in disparities in systems of measurement and difficulty in quantifying results across data sets. This issue is exacerbated by the growing need for reliable data to inform regulatory outcomes, since the medical potential of psychedelic compounds, especially in the treatment of veterans, is being seriously considered by legal scholars, medical ethics and review boards, and local and state governments.
“The creation of the scales was a profitless endeavor, undertaken for the greater good and with the intention of public access for use by anyone,” wrote the study’s authors in an open letter to colleagues in the field. “We encourage the sharing of the scales with researchers for use in studies, with facilitators for tracking and supporting client integration progress, with integration guides for use in sessions, with psychedelic centers for improving services, with individuals embarking on psychedelic journeys for self-reflection, and with anyone else for whom the Psychedelic Integration Scales and research might be helpful.”
In publishing this first-of-its kind analytical tool, VETS and the study authors hope to make it widely available—for individual users and patients making the most of their psychedelic experiences with integration, as well as for practitioners, clinics, researchers, and training providers in need of survey tools to evaluate the effectiveness of their work.
Leading psychedelic researchers and clinicians have been vocal in their praise for the Psychedelic Integration Scales.
“Finally, we have access to valuable rating scales, carefully-constructed, that capture and reflect integrative processes,” said William A. Richards, Ph.D., of the Johns Hopkins Center for Psychedelic & Consciousness Research. “They are welcomed, not only by scientific researchers of the after-effects of non-ordinary states of consciousness, but by all who are dedicated to personal and spiritual development, who are hard at work in the process of integrating new perspectives and insights into everyday lives.”
Ingmar Gorman, Ph.D., co-founder of psychedelic therapy training provider Fluence, stated that “The psychedelic integration scales are a vital contribution to the field of psychedelic research. They will be essential in qualifying changes that may occur through psychedelic experiences as a consequence of the integration process. This work will pave the way for empirical data to be collected, helping us understand how psychedelics ultimately translate into healing and greater wellbeing.”
Media interested in interviewing the study authors or members of the VETS team about the study publication and/or about how VETS uses psychedelic integration to enhance the effectiveness of psychedelic therapies for U.S. veterans may contact Brad Burge at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Founded in 2019, Veterans Exploring Treatment Solutions (VETS) is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization working to end the veteran suicide epidemic by providing resources, research, and advocacy for U.S. military veterans seeking psychedelic-assisted therapies for traumatic brain injury (TBI), post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), addiction, and other health conditions. VETS envisions a world where our veterans have access to the most advanced healthcare options to heal from the mental and physical wounds of war.