First B.C. Interior ketamine clinic opening in Kelowna to treat severe depression | iNFOnews | Thompson-Okanagan's News Source
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Kelowna News

First B.C. Interior ketamine clinic opening in Kelowna to treat severe depression

Dr. Anita Sanan, medical director for the clinic and anesthesiologist at Kelowna General Hospital, says clients relax in this chair while the ketamine treatments are administered.

A Kelowna clinic, the first in B.C.'s Interior, is opening next month to treat patients with severe depression by using psychedelic drugs.

The EntheoMed Ketamine Suite, a division of Kelowna-based EntheoTech Bioscience Inc., opens to the public, April 4, at 1835 Gordon Dr. inside Capri Centre Mall, according to a press release issued by the company.

The clinic will use psychedelic-assisted therapy with medical oversight for treatment-resistant depression and other mental health indications. The month-long program delivers intramuscular ketamine doses paired with psychotherapy, yoga and breathing techniques," said Dr. Michael Ocana, a UBC medicine assistant professor and EntheoTech's head of psychiatry.

Ketamine was first approved for use in Canada as an anaesthetic and research has shown it has positive impacts on those with depression, post-traumatic stress disorder and chronic trauma and stress, Ocana said.

“It’s a pretty cutting-edge type of intervention coming out of the knowledge that we’re having about how to work with this kind of medicines,” he said, adding he will perform the intakes to determine the appropriate patients for this treatment.

Patients are referred to the clinic by a physician before they can enter the four-week program, he said. The cost of which equates to $5,600 as it’s not entirely covered by the province’s medical care.

A waiting room for patients of the EntheoMed Ketamine Suite.
A waiting room for patients of the EntheoMed Ketamine Suite.

The program includes an assessment with psychiatrist and medical physician, three intramuscular ketamine dosing sessions, four individual psychotherapy sessions, four group integration sessions featuring breath work and two group meditation/mindful movement sessions.

“In addition to being an anti-depressant, it’s being used routinely now without therapy. It can also be used to promote this kind of changes of consciousness… to help them break out of depression because those changes of consciousness help to get outside of yourself and get outside of patterns in your mind, the thought patterns that often hold you in depression,” Ocana said.

Dr. Anita Sanan, medical director for the clinic and anesthesiologist at Kelowna General Hospital, said they already have roughly 200 people from across B.C. that are interested in the treatment. Typically, wait times are four to six weeks before treatment commences.

Those interested can book a consultation through EntheoTech’s website.


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