News

Doctor dodges losing licence

A FORMER prison doctor has narrowly avoided being stripped of his medical licence after he was found to have prescribed uncontrolled doses of opiates to drug addicts in Northern NSW, including a Ballina patient he supplied with morphine for seven years.

Dr Colin Jamieson was prosecuted by the Health Care Complaints Commission for unsatisfactory professional conduct on the grounds he had repeatedly prescribed Schedule 4D and Schedule 8 medications while counselling patients - at least 10 of whom were considered to be at "extreme risk of overdose death, violence and worsening psychiatric symptoms".

The NSW Civil and Administrative Tribunal heard Dr Jamieson had been a partner in a medical practice at Bathurst since the early '80s and had regularly come across addicts during his time as a visiting GP at the Bathurst Jail where many of the inmates in the female-only X-Wing were on the methadone program.

In the years that followed, Dr Jamieson formed the belief that it was important to "chemically stabilise" a patient in order for them to function and "hopefully engage in non-medicated ways of interacting with their thoughts and feelings".

Despite not being relevantly qualified in psychiatry or psychology, Dr Jamieson went on to develop the "Wonderment Program", an amalgamation of cognitive behaviour therapy and psychoanalytical techniques" in 2005.

The tribunal heard Dr Jamieson was of the belief that "a lot of the time, drug dependant people were self-medicating with illicit drugs … to function and not for intoxication" and continued to prescribe addictive drugs to his patients after they had moved to other areas.

One Ballina patient, considered to be at risk, was prescribed morphine for up to seven years without seeing a local doctor or being referred to a specialist.

A senior doctor's report tendered in court found that the prescribing of medicine to a vulnerable group of people was "excessive and uncontrolled" and patients were at "extreme risk of misadventure".

After reading through the complaints, Dr Jameson admitted that his management and treatment of the 10 patients in question was "significantly below the standard reasonably expected of a practitioner of an equivalent level of training or experience".

Dr Jamieson was reprimanded and banned from treating patients with psychiatric/psychological symptoms and/or drug and alcohol addiction.

The panel also ordered that he be monitored by the Medical Council, Medicare and Pharmaceutical Services before being re-assessed in 12 months.

Topics:  doctor, drug addicts




Do you think you have the cutest baby on the Northern Rivers?

Dad Tim Sherwin with his 3 year old son Levi Sherwin, who has been entered in the Baby Show.

Comp judges cutest baby, happiest baby and baby with longest lashes

Priscilla is coming to Brunswick Heads

Northern Rivers gender illusionist Maude Boate (Michael Gates) promoting the upcoming screenings of Priscilla Queen of the Desert at the Brunswick Picture House.

Maude Boate will host two special screenings

Ten things to do this week

CRAFY OCCASION: Co-ordinator of the Alstonville-Wollongbar Quota Club's Arts, Craft and Garden Fair, Susan French (left) with club president Diana Cooper holding a decorated boot which is part of a campaign in support of an organisation lobbyng for more service for those with depression.

Music, craft, rugby, theatre and more

Latest deals and offers

John Krasinski has better sex now he's in good shape

John Krasinski says there's at least one good reason to get jacked

Priscilla is coming to Brunswick Heads

Northern Rivers gender illusionist Maude Boate (Michael Gates) promoting the upcoming screenings of Priscilla Queen of the Desert at the Brunswick Picture House.

Maude Boate will host two special screenings

Kanye West gets 'free reign' at VMAs

Kanye West has been let off the leash for the VMAs

Robbie Williams sings at manager's funeral

Robbie Williams and Lamar sang at the funeral of their manager

Twice as much Troy will please country music lovers

CATCH HIM WHILE YOU CAN: Singer Troy Cassar-Daley plans to take some time off to spend with family next year.

TROY Cassar-Daley is releasing a new album and book.

Top 5 in local entertainment this week

No Caption

Top 5 events in local entertainment this week

REVEALED: Pat Rafter's $18m Coast house on the market

Check out the photos of the Coast's most expensive property for sale

The "correction we had to have" in Gladstone's rentals

UPWARD MARCH: The rental vacancy rate in Gladstone has improved for the first time in more than a year, providing a confidence boost in the market.

Vacancy rates improve with signs that things are getting betterF

ISLAND FOR SALE: Cheap Fraser Coast island drops price again

Suna Island in the Great Sandy Strait will be auctioned by Ray White Hervey Bay on Saturday morning.

This is the cheapest island you will find for sale in Australia

How a family home can fit on a 250sq m block

This is what you can build on 250m2.

Here's the floor plan of a home built on 250sq m

Investors eye Gladstone's $4m island with resort approval

UP FOR SALE: Turtle Island is on the market.

CHINESE and Sydney investors flag interest in Gladstone island.

Take a sneak peek at this $19m Whitsunday mansion

Mandalay House features a private helipad.

Mandalay is currently on the market with an asking price of $19m