On May 17 the international online conference "Psychedelics: the game-changer in mental health and medical science" took place in Riga. The aim of the conference was to stimulate discussion in Latvia and the Baltics about the integrative methods in medicine – especially in the fields of mental health, oncology, palliative care and addiction treatment – applying mind-altering methods and psychedelics.

A total of 14 well-known international and local experts spoke at the conference. Keynote speakers at the conference included Paul Stamets, Dennis McKenna, David J Nutt, Ethan Nadelmann, Mendel Kaelen, Pamela Kryskow and Indriķis Muižnieks.

The conference was organised by the association “Veselīga Latvija” (Healthy Latvia) in cooperation with the culture portal

Due to great public interest in the conference, we have made all the speakers' presentations publicly available.

Psilocybin mushroom medicines and why psilocybin mushrooms are appropriate medicines for our time

Paul Stamets

Paul Stamets is a mycologist, the world's preeminent mushroom and fungi expert, medical researcher, author of six books, and an industry leader in research related to the use of fungi in improving both the planet's ecology and human health. Paul Stamets has been a dedicated mycologist for over 40 years, and his philosophy is that “MycoDiversity is BioSecurity.”


How psychedelic research is revolutionising psychiatry

David J Nutt

David J Nutt is a professor of Neuropsycho¬pharmacology, director of the Neuropsycho-pharmacology Unit in the Division of Brain Sciences at the Imperial College London. His research area is psychopharmacology – the study of the effects of drugs on the brain, from the perspectives of both how drug treatments in psychiatry and neurology work, and why people use and become addicted to some drugs such as alcohol. He is a strong advocate of evidence-based drug policy, working tirelessly to bridge the gap between legislators and researchers.


Plant and Human Symbiosis

Dennis McKenna

Dennis McKenna is an ethnopharmacologist, research pharmacognosist, thinker, lecturer, author and the founder of the McKenna Academy of Natural Philosophy. For more than forty years, his professional research and activities have focused on hallucinogenic plants as well as the quest for synergy between Western science and ancient indigenous knowledge.


Harm reduction and Drug Policy reform

Ethan Nadelmann

Ethan Nadelmann is host of the weekly podcast, PSYCHOACTIVE, as well as founder and former executive director of the Drug Policy Alliance (DPA), the nation’s leading drug policy reform organization. Described by Rolling Stone as "the point man" for drug policy reform efforts and “the real drug czar,” Ethan is widely regarded as the outstanding proponent of drug policy reform both in the United States and abroad.


The neuroscience of psychedelic therapy and the therapeutic role of music

Mendel Kaelen

Mendel Kaelen is neuroscientist and a thought leader on the therapeutic use of music. He is the founder and CEO of Wavepaths, a tool that facilitates live, unique, personalised music experiences both for and as psychedelic therapy. The ultimate aim of Wavepath is to develop, through research, a new approach to wellbeing.


Medical perspective on psychedelic interventions for healing

Dr. Pamela Kryskow

Dr. Pamela Kryskow is the Board Member of the Psychedelic Association of Canada, the medical lead in Roots To Thrive Non Profit and the Medical Chair of the Vancouver Island University Psychedelic Assisted Therapy Post Graduate Certificate Program. She is currently working with colleagues on research related to Psychedelic Assisted Psychotherapy, Microdosing, MDMA, Psilocybin, Chronic Pain and Psychedelic therapy.


The Latvian, Latvian science, and mushrooms

Indriķis Muižnieks

Indriķis Muižnieks is Professor of Microbiology, Member of the Latvian Academy of Sciences, and Rector of the University of Latvia. He also was one of the founders of the Association of Latvian shitake mushroom growers. So, he will speak about Latvians, Latvian science and mushrooms.


Experience: Uruguay as Drug Policy Pioneer

Vita Liberte

As lawyer and entrepreneur, Vita Liberte is a founder of BDO Latvia and a popular speaker at local and international conferences. An alumna of the prestigious New York University, she has been permanently on Forbes' list of the most successful business women in Latvia. In 2022 she had the honor of becoming Honorary Consul of Uruguay in Latvia.


Mental health care and its issues of concern in Latvia

Ieva Bite

Ieva Bite is clinical and health psychologist, specialist in cognitive behavioural therapy, and associate professor at the University of Latvia. She has actively contributed to the development of psychological support and psychotherapy in Latvia, and she speaks a lot about the role of wise mind in the healthy relationships with ourselves and society in general.


Teenagers and substance abuse: when traditional approaches are no longer effective (if ever they were)...

Nils S. Konstantinovs

Nils S. Konstantinovs is the founder and clinical lead at the Psychotherapy Center for Adolescents & Youth, practising child and adolescent psychotherapist. Currently bringing together professionals to form the Latvian Society of Adolescent Health and developing the first residential facility in the country for the treatment of adolescent offenders with mental health disorders.


Addiction problems in young people: a narcologist's point of view

Ilze Maksima

Ilze Maksima is a doctor-narcologist and a CBT (Cognitive Behavioral Therapy) specialist at Vivendi Health Centre. She is Member of the Board of Latvian Association of Narcologists.


Increasing trends of calls to psychotropic and narcotic substance users in an emergency

Rafaels Ciekurs

Rafaels Ciekurs is the Head of the NMPD (Emergency Ambulance Service) Brigade Support Centre "Krasts”. He has Master's degrees in Healthcare and Law.

"I always believe that you have to solve the root causes of problems – the consequences will be much smaller in the future!”


Regenerative experience design

Luīze Anna Bankoviča

Luīze Anna Bankoviča is an experience designer with a master's degree in Sustainability in Creative Industries from AMD Berlin. Her research focused on the link between mind-altering practices and the development of regenerative behaviour and value shift. Or, in other words, the role of set and setting, purpose and integration in mind-altering practices.


The mass confusion and mental health crisis of teenagers and why it is vital to educate about the subject of consciousness and self awareness

Katrīna Ērgle

Almost graduate of gymnasium. On the threshold of adult life



Participation in the conference and access to recordings of it are free of charge for all interested parties. Nonetheless, the conference organisers will be grateful for support and contributions to continue raise awareness on this topic.

The association "Veselīga Latvija" is a non-profit organisation.

Registration number: 40008307724,
Address: Lāčplēša 75A-16, Rīga LV-1011,
Account number: LV71HABA0551051817788.