Review of two day training program by Dr Russ Harris on 18 & 19 of February 2013

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Russ presented a lively seminar with appropriate metaphors to be used in understanding mindfulness and ACT. My impression is that the medical profession in Australia is still reluctant to embrace the mindfulness as a method of psychotherapy. About two years ago the Australian Doctor magazine published a headline article about a patient I referred for counseling whom I considered was suitable for mindfulness therapy. The doctor that I referred too, had limitations on his practice regarding psychotic clients. The patient had requested referral to a psychologist, it was my opinion that the patient was suitable of mindful therapy as he complained of bullying at his work at a male brothel He had been using illicit drugs, after complainigs to the complaints unit about the doctors approach of being aware of his own self body image. The complaints unit judged that the patient was psychotic and should not have been treated with mindfulness therapy by the doctor and should have referred him to a psychiatrist. There were two doctors asked to make opionn on the matter, one was GP the other a psychiatrist neither had knowledge of mindfulness therapy, neither interviews the patient or read my report regarding the patient or requested information directly from me. I clearly indicated the patient was not psychotic at the time of my consultation. I had asked the patient see a psychiatrist as he had past treatment. He refused this and I felt justified to refer to a doctor familiar with mental illness, this matter dragged out for over a year. The option would have been to organize a mediation between the patient and the doctor concerned to clarify what appeared to be a misunderstanding and interpretation of mindfulness. This could have been organized much sooner with I believe a better outcome for both the patient and doctor. I present this case situation to warn, fellow practitioners that it is important to be sure the client really understands what we are doing and provide written information and the opportunity to ask questions before they lodge a complaint on the internet. Harry Haber email.