A former Nakusp doctor has been disciplined by the College of Physicians and Surgeons of British Columbia (CPSBC) after admitting to having a sexual relationship with a patient in 2018.
Dr. Norman Keith Lea was a long-time resident of Nakusp and operated the village’s only clinic for a number of years. Lea arrived in Nakusp in 1988 and practiced at Saddle Mountian Medical Clinic and at Arrow Lakes Hospital until his retirement in 2021.
According to the CPSBC, Lea repeatedly met with a patient on a personal basis between Aug. and Dec. 2018, violating the patient-physician relationship.
The public notification released by the CPSBC on Jan. 5, states that Lea admitted that he “engaged in unprofessional conduct by entering into a personal and sexual relationship with an individual while the individual was his patient and that he exchanged messages with this patient via Facebook and WhatsApp which were flirtatious and sexualized.”
The notification states that Lea and the patient were involved in a sexual relationship at his medical clinic, in the on-call room at the Arrow Lakes Hospital, and at other locations around the community.
Following the authorization of a disciplinary citation, Lea has consented to a formally published reprimand, a suspension from practicing medicine for two years, completion of a multi-disciplinary program and attendance at an interview at the college.
According to a former patient, Lea entered retirement after rumours surrounding the inappropriate relationship were swirling around the community. He currently resides in Kelowna and there is no indication that he will return to his practice after the completion of his suspension.