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B.C. doctor disciplined for therapy that included hypnosis, psilocybin and MDMA

Offences involving an employee occurred in Duncan between October 2020 and April 2021

A Duncan doctor has been disciplined for conduct contrary to the standards set forth by B.C. College of Physicians and Surgeons, including prescribing psilocybin and MDMA.

According to a notice issued Feb. 27 by the B.C. College of Physicians and Surgeons, Dr. Paul Michael Harris admitted to and was reprimanded for prescribing medication to an employee without documenting the doctor-patient encounters, and for using non-conventional therapies, specifically hypnosis, as a form of therapy outside of an office setting.

What’s more, Harris was disciplined for prescribing psilocybin, otherwise known as magic mushrooms, and MDMA, which were then administered by a non-physician as a form of therapy, the document said.

The offences occurred between October 2020 and April 2021.

The conduct was found to be in violation of the College’s professional standards and as such, warranted discipline, according to the regulatory body’s inquiry committee.

“The Inquiry Committee was critical of the registrant’s conduct and noted that the conduct was contrary to the College practice standards,” the group said. “The committee noted that by repeatedly contravening College practice standards, Dr. Harris placed the employee at risk, and therefore, a disciplinary outcome was appropriate.”

As part of a consent agreement between Harris and the B.C. College of Physicians and Surgeons, the doctor’s registration with the body has been downgraded from a “full-specialty” class to a “conditional-disciplined” class and he has received a formal reprimand.

Harris has been ordered to not provide medical care to or prescribe medication to staff or any person close to him and to refrain from using hypnosis outside an office setting. Harris was also ordered not to use non-approved drugs like psilocybin and MDMA outside of a research setting and to “document all of patient-physician encounters and maintain office medical records to the standard expected of physicians in British Columbia.”

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Sarah Simpson

About the Author: Sarah Simpson

I started my time with Black Press Media as an intern, before joining the Citizen in the summer of 2004.
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