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Call For Lake Alice Victims To Take Further Action

MEDIA RELEASE
For Immediate Release
6 December 2001

Psychiatrists Call On Lake Alice Victims To Take Further Action

The Royal Australian and New Zealand College of Psychiatrists (RANZCP) is encouraging anyone who was adversely affected by treatment received as a patient of the Adolescent Unit at Lake Alice Hospital in the 1970s to lodge a complaint with either the Medical Council of New Zealand or the Medical Practitioners Board of Victoria.

“As a profession, we are not prepared to stand by while such horrific allegations of abuse and torture are associated with our specialty. We are determined to have this matter resolved, once and for all,” Craig Glenroy Patterson, Executive Director of the RANZCP said.

“The Prime Minister and Health Minister in New Zealand have seen fit to apologise to and to compensate the former ‘patients’ of the service operated by Dr Leeks. And yet, despite everything they have been through and all the allegations being made publicly about their experiences, no investigation into the role played by this doctor in the alleged practices has been successfully completed.”

“The Medical Practitioners Board of Victoria and the Medical Council of New Zealand are now the only bodies with the power to investigate these allegations and, if necessary, to act to prevent this doctor from continuing to practise.”

“It is clear to us now that the only way that justice will be served in relation to the alleged clinical practice of Dr Leeks is if the former ‘patients’ at Lake Alice make their cases to the statutory authorities,” Mr Patterson said.

“We urge anyone in a position to do so to come forward to the statutory bodies and lodge a complaint.”

“This is the only way we will ever achieve a satisfactory resolution to this matter; for the former ‘patients’ first and foremost, but also for the doctor concerned and for the profession.”

“The College demands of its members the highest possible ethical and clinical standards and will do all that is legally possible to ensure that these standards are upheld.”

- end -

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