A Toronto man misplaced his Ontario driver’s licence after admitting to a health care provider he smokes marijuana each day.

The person, age 53, supplied a part of his medical file and different info to World Information for examination however requested to not be publicly recognized out of concern for his employment.

Final October, the person was referred to Dr. Peter Phua, a medical physician who works in a psychotherapy clinic.

He was searching for assist with anxiousness and claustrophobia, an excessive worry of confined locations.

The person says he was sincere and upfront about his lifetime use of marijuana, which by mid-month was legally obtainable in Canada. He mentioned he has at all times been truthful with physicians.


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“He’s a health care provider, I assumed I may belief him. Should you can’t belief your physician who are you able to belief?” he mentioned.

Phua is listed as a household doctor within the public report of the School of Physicians and Surgeons of Ontario.

On the preliminary assembly, the person says he informed Phua he typically smokes 5 small joints in a day, often combined on a 50-50 foundation with tobacco.

“I informed him I don’t smoke and drive,” he mentioned, explaining he owns his personal enterprise, has a number of staff, and is conscientious about his hashish consumption.

He suffers from Crohn’s Illness and has survived two types of most cancers. He says marijuana helps him calm down.

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Within the first assembly, the person mentioned Phua warned him he may have his driver’s licence revoked over his marijuana use, however wouldn’t.

At a second assembly with the physician a couple of week later, he says Phua repeated his warning and the peace of mind he wouldn’t report him.


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“Twice he threatened, twice he mentioned he wouldn’t, after which he did,” the person mentioned.

Per week after the second assembly, the person obtained a telephone name from Phua, who introduced he was contacting the Ministry of Transportation of Ontario to have his driver’s licence revoked.

“It was unreal, it sucked the air out of me,” he informed World Information.

On Oct. 15, the person acquired a discover of suspension of driver’s licence from the ministry, asserting his driving privileges could be revoked as of Oct. 22.

The letter cited “proof of medical situation that might have an effect on your means to securely function a motorcar” as the explanation.

“Cease driving. You have to not drive if you are suspended,” the letter warned.

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By now, the person had contacted the School of Physicians and Surgeons to file a grievance in opposition to the physician. The School is investigating whether or not Phua violated the person’s privateness and informed the person “he’ll deceive MTO to get Mr. X’s driver’s licence suspended”, allegations which haven’t been established by the medical regulator.

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The School of Physicians and Surgeons didn’t reply to a name for remark, nor did Phua.

The person additionally utilized to attraction the choice by the MTO. He submitted medical proof from a gastroenterologist who had handled him for a number of years.

“To my information, there isn’t any drug dependent historical past of impairment,” the physician wrote, in help of the person’s licence reinstatement.

After submitting types and medical recommendation, the person obtained excellent news.

“I obtained my licence again in two weeks. They (ministry employees) mentioned it was a miracle,” the person mentioned.

Medical professionals are obligated to tell the ministry about somebody’s medical state of affairs in sure circumstances.

In line with MTO rules, the “objective of the medical reporting program is to guard the general public from people who’ve a medical situation which will make it unsafe to drive.”

The ministry’s guidelines modified on July 1, 2018.


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Beneath part 203 of the Freeway Visitors Act, there at the moment are obligatory reporting necessities for high-risk medical circumstances, imaginative and prescient circumstances and practical impairments that make it harmful for an individual to drive.

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The foundations now apply to physicians, optometrists and nurse practitioners.

“Included within the obligatory high-risk circumstances/impairments is uncontrolled substance use issues. Physicians and nurse practitioners are required to report any affected person who has a prognosis of an uncontrolled substance use dysfunction, excluding caffeine and nicotine, and the individual is non-compliant with remedy suggestions.”

However the man whose licence was suspended for marijuana use mentioned he was not given any remedy suggestions or prognosis by Phua.

In line with the ministry, somebody may additionally lose driving privileges for extreme consumption of alcohol, even when the affected person doesn’t drive whereas impaired.


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“Every case is reviewed on a person foundation within the context of regulatory necessities and nationwide medical requirements,” mentioned a ministry spokesperson.

Relieved that his licence has been returned, the person informed World Information he’s involved for different individuals who devour marijuana duty, maintain driver’s licences and anticipate to have the ability to converse frankly with their physician about hashish use.

“It’s going to be a giant downside. You wish to belief a health care provider. But when they droop your licence, I don’t know.”

© 2019 World Information, a division of Corus Leisure Inc.

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