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Digital Seminar

An Introduction to Ayahuasca for Mental Health Providers

Jeffrey Guss, MD
1 Hour 04 Minutes
Audio and Video
Jul 27, 2022
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Media Type:
Digital Seminar
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Ayahuasca is one of the most popular and least understood of the psychedelic agents. This recording will cover an introduction to ayahuasca, including biochemical, neuroscientific and historical/cultural aspects of its use. Following this, we’ll cover contemporary research on its effects on mental health and its use for treatment of conditions such as addiction and depression. Lastly, some of the psychodynamic aspects of shamanic and syncretic religions settings will be described.



PESI Australia, in collaboration with PESI in the USA, offers quality online continuing professional development events from the leaders in the field at a standard recognized by professional associations including psychology, social work, occupational therapy, alcohol and drug professionals, counselling and psychotherapy. On completion of the training, a Professional Development Certificate is issued after the individual has answered and submitted a quiz and course evaluation. This program is worth 1.25 hours CPD for points calculation by your association.



Jeffrey Guss, MD's Profile

Jeffrey Guss, MD Related seminars and products

Jeffrey Guss, MD, is a psychiatrist, psychoanalyst, researcher and teacher with specializations in psychoanalytic therapy and psychedelic therapy. He is on the faculty of the NYU Postdoctoral Program in Psychotherapy and Psychoanalysis and is a Clinical Assistant Professor of Psychiatry at NYU School of Medicine.

Dr. Guss was the Co-Principal Investigator and Director of Psychedelic Therapy Training for the NYU study on psilocybin-assisted psychotherapy in the treatment of cancer anxiety and is a study therapist with several MAPS studies. He has published on the integration of Acceptance and Commitment Therapy with psychedelic assisted therapy for MDD in Journal of Contextual and Behavioral Science and co-authored a paper on the influence of therapists’’ firsthand psychedelic experiences. He maintains a private practice in New York City.


Speaker Disclosures:
Financial: Dr. Jeffrey Guss is a lead trainer with Fluence. He has employment relationships with California Institute for Integral Studies, Yale University, and Cybin. Dr. Guss maintains a private practice. He receives a speaking honorarium from PESI, Inc.
Non-financial: Dr. Jeffrey Guss is a study therapist with the New York University Medical Center Research and is a sub-investigator in MAPS.


  1. Analyze the components of ayahuasca and appraise the most important medication interaction risks when taking it.
  2. Evaluate the 2 most common settings in which individuals might drink ayahuasca and how they are different.
  3. Apply a Harm Reduction model to help patients/clients make informed decisions regarding ayahuasca use. 


  • Basic biochemistry and neuroscience of ayahuasca 
  • Introduction to the history and cultural aspects of ayahuasca around the world. 
  • Selected findings from research on the effect of ayahuasca on mental health and its use as a treatment for addiction and depression  
  • Psychodynamic aspects of shamanic and syncretic religious settings for ayahuasca use that will be informative to mental health practitioners whose patients/clients seek ayahuasca experiences

Target Audience

  • Counsellors
  • Marriage & Family Therapists
  • Nurses
  • Psychologists
  • Social Workers
  • Other Behavioral Health Professionals

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