On Monday, October 10, 2022, Access Hour was hosted by Alan Ferguson, the founder
of Treatment Assistance Fund, Inc. TAFI was formed in March of 2022 with two
missions: 1) Educate both the public as well as the mental health professional
community in rural areas about the availability and efficacy of ketamine infusions for
treatment-resistant depression, major depressive disorder, suicidal thinking, and other
mental health disorders; and 2) Provide financial assistance to clients who are in need of
ketamine infusions but cannot afford them.
TAFI began providing financial assistance to its first client in September, to the great
relief of Alan and the TAFI Board of Directors. This is, after all, where the fund will
really make a difference in helping to prevent suicide!
According to the National Institute of Mental Illness, some 53 million Americans suffer
from mental illness. We are all aware of the increasing number of suicides in and
around our communities. Alan, himself, was rescued from suicide by ketamine
infusions in 2018, and has been advocating for its coverage by Medicare and Medicaid
ever since. He realized, though, that this advocacy was not actually saving lives. Thus,
the formation of TAFI.
Alan was joined on Access hour by Drs. Christopher Nicholas and Chantelle Thomas,
from the UW Madison Transdisciplinary Center for Research in Psychoactive
Substances, which is heavily involved in researching psychoactives and the promise
they hold for patients with mental illnesses. What substances are being studied, how
are the clinical trials looking, and when might these new therapeutics be available?
Alan and his guests aired at 7:00 PM on October 10, for an informative discussion about
treatments that are available today, as well as those that are likely coming in the near
future. The current – and future – are bright because of these therapeutic medications
that can act in just a few hours!
Because mental illness should not be a terminal illness.