BC doctor halts ayahuasca treatment under government pressure

Posted on November 11th, 2011 by Global Ganja Report and tagged , , , , , .

Health Canada is threatening to prosecute a Vancouver physician who says he has successfully using the Amazonian plant medicine ayahuasca to treat addiction. In a two-page letter sent last week, Johanne Beaulieu, director of Ottawa's Office of Controlled Substances, reminded Gabor Maté that possession of ayahuasca is illegal under Canada's Controlled Drugs and Substances Act. The letter warned that unless he immediately ceased the treatments, the RCMP would be notified. Dr. Maté, a family practitioner who specializes in addiction, said he will reluctantly comply with the order.

"I have no intention of breaking the law," he said. "But I hope to get permission to use it in therapeutic context. I'm surprised no one thought to talk to me before sending the letter, but I suppose someone in Ottawa is just doing their job."

Over the past two years, Dr. Maté has administered the medicine to some 200 patients, principally Vancouver-area drug addicts. He says that several have reported significant breakthroughs. "I think Health Canada's threat to be ridiculous and unfortunate," said Megan Hames, who was part of Dr. Maté's trial group. (Toronto Globe & Mail, Nov. 9)

Photo by Fractal Enlightenment


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