Vancouver doctor treats patients with illegal plant

Meet a Vancouver doctor says a plant from the jungles of Peru can help some of his patients suffering from addictions. But Health Canada says he can't use it in his practice in Canada because it's illegal.



Part Three of The Current

Vancouver doctor treats patients with illegal plant

We started this segment with Vancouver doctor Gabor Mate speaking with one of his patients. Gabor Mate has treated addicts in the downtown eastside of Vancouver for years. But he hasn't had great success. His frustration led him to look beyond traditional medicine for answers ... All the way to the Peruvian jungle and its promise of better treatments.

Traditional Peruvian healers use an ancient plant, the Ayahuasca in a ceremony that involves drinking a concoction made from the plant. It can be a tough cure, the potion can cause hallucinations and often vomiting. But Dr. Mate says he's seen results.

Tonight on the The Nature of Things, Gabor Mate's medical quest will be featured in a documentary called Jungle Prescription. Gabor Mate joined us from our Vancouver studio.

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Dr. Mate's work with Ayahuasca to treat patients will be featured tonight on CBC Television, on The Nature of Things, at 8 pm.

Last Word - Buchenwald

Tomorrow on The Current remembers the sacrifices of Canadians in uniform. We'll hear the harrowing story of wireless operator Ed Carter Edwards. He was captured in Germany after parachuting from a damaged aircraft and taken to the notorious concentration camp -- Buchenwald. On today's Last word, a chapter from a Second World War story of survival.


Other segments from today's show:

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