Australian psychologist censured over inappropriate texts

March 1, 2018

Elise Lowick, a psychologist in Australia, was reprimanded by the NSW Civil and Administrative Tribunal for falling below the standards of the profession.

Lowick sent inappropriate texts to a teenaged boy who was a patient.  The boy had begun thinking of killing others around age 12 or 13.  He began seeing Lowick around age 17.  Lowick sent the patient a series of inappropriate text messages including, "If your [sic] planning on murder, can you come kill the jack hammer guy outside my house" in early 2016.  In another, Dr Lowick suggested staff and a psychologist at the boy’s school "have to say hi so that they seemingly care about your well being."

The tribunal members said they were ‘‘particularly concerned’’ by the joke message about killing the jackhammer operator.  "The reference to murder, and the suggestion to kill someone, to a 17-year-old patient with homicidal ideation is not appropriate in any circumstances or for any reason," they wrote.

Dr. Lowick must now undergo supervision herself, meet a mentor and attend a professional boundaries course.

SOURCE: Patrick Begley, "Murder, she joked: psychologist censured over inappropriate texts," Sydney Morning Herald, 24 Feb 2018,


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