Parents Thrilled With Cruise Interview: “Chemical Imbalance is Pseudoscience”

June 30th, 2005 | Press Releases

Sheila Matthews
National Vice President
www.ablechild.org
(203) 966-8419

 A parents and children’s rights group says the recent debate with Tom Cruise and Matt Lauer on the bogus science behind psychiatry finally brings a public health crisis directly to the public: children are killing themselves and others while on psychiatric drugs. Mrs. Sheila Matthews, National Vice President of Ablechild, said, “Both Mr. Lauer and Mr. Cruise have opened up the media to a psychiatric opinion not substantiated by scientific fact: that children’s rambunctious behavior or educational problems are the result of a ‘chemical imbalance.’ Talk to the thousands of parents whose children, because of this lie, placed their children into the dangerous world of psychiatry and watched as their child worsened or even died from the dangerous drugs prescribed for it. We have! And Mr. Cruise is right.”

“Tom Cruise isn’t discounting that women and children have problems; certainly Brooke Shields has. But his comments make parents coast to coast very happy that the ‘chemical imbalance’ sham is broken into a national topic. Parents and new mothers have the right to know the facts,” Mrs. Mathews said.

She said a subsequent interview on The Today Show with American Psychiatric Association president, Steven Sharfstein, showed the degree to which the APA skirts around the “chemical imbalance” issue. When questioned about its non-existence, Dr. Sharfstein claimed that research “belies this” yet didn’t state what the “chemical” imbalance was or what specific physical test a parent or patient should ask for to support such a claim.

Ablechild Board Member, Dr. William Glasser, a psychiatrist since 1961 and author of Warning: Psychiatry Can Be Hazardous to Your Mental Health says that a true mental illness exists only if pathology can show something is organically wrong. “Psychiatrists are failing to teach people what they need to know and are offering them drugs instead,” he said. Prescriptions equal “big bucks,” Glasser says.

Writing recently to Congressman Wally Herger regarding Congressional Hearings that focused on Experimental Psychiatry with Foster Children, Dr. Glasser said: “There is no evidence that the drugs are in any way helpful, but there is a great deal of evidence that they may be harmful.”

Further, “No one knows what the long-term effects are from these drugs. The short-term effects, in many cases, are somewhat disastrous and include violent activity and suicide.”

For further information on the effects of psychiatric drugs and their risks, please visit www.ablechild.org.

Research on AbleChild.org demonstrates the lack of a chemical imbalance as recently debated on the Today Show

June 27th, 2005 | Press Releases

Patricia Weathers
President
www.ablechild.org
(845) 677-8115

Sheila Matthews
National Vice President
www.ablechild.org
(203) 966-8419

 AbleChild.org, a nonprofit grassroots organization dedicated to educating the public on informed consent and the right to refuse psychiatric services, has a wealth of scientific resources on its website validating Tom Cruise’s recent statements regarding the lack of science behind a chemical imbalance and the dangers associated with psychiatric drugs.

“Not since John Stuart Mills essay on Liberty has there been an awareness of individual’s rights and the responsibility of society to evaluate its actions,” said Clinton Libbey, an AbleChild volunteer . “Over one hundred thousand parents have contacted Ablechild with complaints of being coerced, as well as, not being adequately informed of the dangers associated with psychotropic drugs,” he added.

Dr. William Glasser, Board Certified Psychiatrist since 1961, recently submitted testimony for the Congressional hearings on Experimental Psychiatry on Children within foster care, which stated, “No one knows what the long-term effects are from these drugs. The short-term effects, in many cases, are somewhat disastrous and include violent activity and suicide. There is no evidence that the drugs are in any way helpful.”

This debate has opened up the media to a subjugated opinion held by many parents whose children have been abused or have died as a result of coercive psychiatric practices. Ablechild is currently working on a case of coercive psychiatry in the State of Illinois where two girls, aged 10 and 13, are being forced on four different psychiatric drugs against their mother’s wishes. Many parents are fighting the unregulated practice of psychiatric care whose voices go unheard by the public.

Children are killing themselves while on antidepressants according to the Food and Drug Administration, which recently required that antidepressants carry a blackbox suicide warning.

Mental Health Vendors Woe Senators with talk of “Reform”. Abuse and Tragedies Portrayed as “Distortions and Misinformation”

May 17th, 2005 | Press Releases

Patricia Weathers
President
www.ablechild.org
(845) 677-8115

Sheila Matthews
National Vice President
www.ablechild.org
(203) 966-8419

Congressional Briefings Call for Early Identification, Evaluation, and Treatment of Children’s Mental Disorders. Mental health proponents use more of the same double talk to make their campaign appear unflawed.

Proponents of the mental health system, including service providers, victims of mental health propaganda, administrators, and benefactors recently targeted senators at a private lobbying seminar this past week. Their latest sales pitch was launched publicly to address what was described as “misinformation” and “distortions,” which they say stem from children’s mental health and its complexity. This latest effort called “The Campaign for Mental Health Reform,” initiated by groups with financial ties to pharmaceutical dollars, comes at a time when considerable negative attention has greatly damaged the core of these pro-mental health group’s.

A series of unfortunate events continue to plague pro-mental health, pro-pharmaceutical groups which they have not been able to extricate themselves from. These events include:

  • Within the last six years a growing number of complaints of schools coercing parents to place children onto Controlled Substances in order to remain in school led to school board resolutions, state and federal legislation to ban this serious abuse of mental health.
  • Federal lawsuits filed on school coercion matter detailing violations of informed consent rights and denials of a person’s right to refuse psychiatric “treatment.”
  • The UK ’s investigation and subsequent ban of SSRI Antidepressants for use in anyone under 18 years due to an increase rate of suicide ideations.
  • Media Coverage of Antidepressant Issue does not allow for the FDA to ignore the factual data on suicide link. FOX National News had first exposed this point in November 2002, when confidential documents from GlaxoSmithKline suggested that a patient taking their antidepressant drug Paxil was 8 times more likely to commit suicide then a patient on placebo (sugar pill).
  • The FDA’s own investigation and hearings into SSRI Antidepressants in early 2004 brought to light an onslaught of victims of mental health abuse at the hands of doctors and pharmaceutical giants.
  • The Pharmaceutical industry was exposed when certain companies were caught deceiving the public by failing to disclose clinical trial data of drug risks and ineffectiveness.
  • The FDA member’s ties with Big Pharma companies reveal real conflict of interest discrediting its decision making process.
  • Congressional Hearings convened to investigate the matter reveals conflicts of interest, distorted data, discrepancies, and cover-up by pharma and FDA.
  • FDA convenes new hearings regarding its further investigation into antidepressants and their link to suicide. More victims of mental health “treatment” driven to suicide and violence come forward in swarms.
  • FDA issues Black Box Warnings on all antidepressants spelling out suicide risks.
  • Pharmaceutical company’s failure to comply with Black Box Warning advertisement disclosures.

This negative attention comes as a wake up call to the nation that real mental health reform is needed and that this reform needs to be with substance!

Children’s mental health is not a complex topic as proponents of mental health continue to allege. Statements like, “Only 20% of children with mental disorders are identified and receive mental health services, leading to school failure, substance abuse, involvement with the juvenile justice system, and suicide,” are good sound bites that lack provable merit. Sadly these fear tactic catch phrases have been repeated so often that the public has been indoctrinated with what constitutes as no more than unscientific “voodoo.” The mental health industry itself knows that it lacks a proven tracking system to account for such figures.

What is real is the victim’s of mental health abuse continuing to come forward to publicly air their tragedies. This cannot be denied or downplayed. It is neither, complex or subtle. These tragedies occurred as a result of mental health abuse, corruption and deceptive statements. The fact is that many have died from drugs being marketed by the industry in the guise of “treatment.”

It is their blood, the blood of many that lies with an industry driven to profit at all cost. Such is mental health today!

For more information on mental health abuse and reform, antidepressants and their risks, please visit us at www.ablechild.org.

“All Must Make Effort to Prevent Child Abuse”

April 23rd, 2005 | Press Releases

Patricia Weathers
President
www.ablechild.org
(845) 677-8115

Sheila Matthews
National Vice President
www.ablechild.org
(203) 966-8419

 “The State of Connecticut Should Take Its Own Advice”

The State of Connecticut should be practicing what it preaches and work harder at preventing abuse of children in state care. A good place to start would be to ban the use of all psychiatric drugs linked to suicide and violence that are currently mandated out to a large percentage of the children in state Care. In addition, another good step would be for the state to stop trafficking children from the Department of Children and Families into clinical drug trials.

The community and taxpayers give millions of dollars to fund State mental health programs to prevent child abuse. How is prevention possible when the State’s failure to warn potential clients and its own use of forced “treatment” is occurring? After all, this is part of the package that Connecticut taxpayers are paying for. Realistically, funding to prevent child abuse would not be a bad thing if the State was held accountable for ensuring that proper and full informed consent is provided to parents, caregivers, and children prior to any mental health “treatment.” The State’s failure in this area involves the fact that it fails to warn potential recipients of mental health “treatment” of the real risks of psychiatric drugs, the lack of objective testing surrounding psychiatric disorders as a whole, and the fact that a psychiatric diagnosis may mask a real underlying medical, educational, or environmental problem. The State goes a step further by not providing a person his or her basic right to “opt out” of “treatment”. In turn, force fed mental health programs are the norm, the standard of care for children within state care. The State has assumed the rights of these children, without question.

Let us be honest with ourselves. We should at this point be well aware of the fact that there is no accountability from the State on the issue of forced drugging within the Department of Children & Families (DCF). This is proven in the fact that our organization, Ablechild, had to petition the State back in 2003 in order for the it to remove two drugs, Paxil and Effexor, that were linked to suicide, not FDA approved for use in children, and that were being used on children in state care. Just months later, GlaxoSmithKline, makers of the drug Paxil, was invited by DCF to participate in policy meetings on psychotropic drugs used on children within the Department. The FDA had warned that “Paxil” should not be used in children; the United Kingdom has banned its use. In November 2002, FOX National News, exposed confidential documents from GlaxoSmithKline which suggested that a patient taking the drug was 8 times more likely to commit suicide then a patient on placebo (sugar pill). Ablechild immediately put in a request to the Governor’s office that it wanted to attend those meetings to allow for equal access and fair representation of the issue that was to be discussed. Their request was denied. At the time, the Governor indicated that the decision was made by Ms. Darlene Dunbar, the head of the Department of Children & Families. Ms. Dunbar advocated on behalf of the psychiatric industry and the drug companies. There was no one present to advocate on behalf of the children who were baring the brunt of “treatment” forced upon them in state care.

Ablechild is currently watching important legislation, H.B. 5179, that if passed, would protect the basic human rights of all children within state care by preventing any forced or mandated psychiatric “treatments” or programs onto them. It also hopes to have the State recognize the importance of informed consent and adhere to it. The Organization will continue to ask for accountability until this end is realized.

With all due respect, the State should begin using the taxpayer’s dollars more wisely by repairing its mental health system and its own clear and obvious abuses of children within State Care.

For more information on state psychiatric abuse within foster care, please visit us at www.ablechild.org.

Battle of the Bills in Florida Forced Drugging vs. Informed Consent for Parents

April 15th, 2005 | Press Releases

Patricia Weathers
President
www.ablechild.org
(845) 677-8115

Sheila Matthews
National Vice President
www.ablechild.org
(203) 966-8419

 The issue of psychiatric drugs and children is once again being challenged. The Nation has its eyes on Florida , where there are two bills that define the legal debate behind behavioral modification drugs used on children. This debate involves full informed consent and the right to refuse psychiatric “treatment.” Senate Bill 1090 “Relating to Minors/Psychotropic Medication” is aimed at allowing the State of Florida to give a Judge the ability to determine which child receives psychotropic “medication” and which child does not. In contrast, Senate Bill 1766 “Relating to School Students/Psychotropic Medication” would ensure informed consent and the constitutional right to refuse psychiatric “treatment.” Overall this bill would protect the rights of the child and the family.

Senate Bill 1090’s overall goal is to rip the informed consent away from the parent and family and exploit the most vulnerable population of children, those in State Care. This bill also allows for a judge to over-rule the parent’s consent if that parent declines psychiatric “treatment” for their child.

Senate Bill 1766 supports a parent’s right to full disclosure that must include the fact that there is no medical test for a psychiatric disorder, and that the child’s behaviors could be the result of underlying physical conditions. This would safeguard the vital interests of children and would provide critical information to parents and caregivers, and their ability to make an informed decision regarding the health and safety of their children.

Florida has entered the battle zone. The rest of the nation will watch as basic human rights are on the line. Now we wait for the people to speak.

Which bill will prevail?

For more information on how you can help protect children and their constitutional rights visit us at www.ablechild.org.

Calls for Federal Investigation into Antidepressants Role in Red Lake Minnesota School Shooting

March 29th, 2005 | Press Releases

Patricia Weathers
President
www.ablechild.org
(845) 677-8115

Sheila Matthews
National Vice President
www.ablechild.org
(203) 966-8419

 Ablechild has submitted a written request to the United States Attorney for the District of Minnesota, as well as the FDA, requesting a full investigation into the latest School Shooting linked to Antidepressant use that took place on the Red Lake Reservation in RED LAKE , Minnesota on March 23, 2005. Jeff Weise was taking Prozac when he unleashed his wrath, first at his grandfather, and then at fellow students and teachers in his school ending with him turning the gun on himself. This latest rampage eerily mirrors the many other adolescent school shootings, which have raged havoc on this great nation, and of which the “common denominator” has been psychiatric drugs linked to violence.

This fact demonstrates that this is not mere coincidence, but an emerging pattern that compromises public safety. The public is becoming educated to this emerging pattern, and with that comes outrage and frustration directed in part at the FDA for failing the public, by continuing to turn a blind eye to the all so obvious link to violence and mania that these drugs are having on our youth, and even more, their deadly link to uncontrolled school terror that has occurred from coast to coast.

Ablechild has previously requested that the FDA provide accountability, where there is none. Accountability is critical now, more than ever, to ensure public safety as a whole.

Ablechild points to the fact that “After 16 years of denial, a series of Eli Lilly (the maker of the drug Prozac) documents that have recently surfaced publicly shows the company’s own review of Prozac in 1988. This review, by Lilly themselves, reveals that even in controlled clinical trials–from which suicidal patients are excluded — 38% of patients taking Prozac compared to 19% of patients on placebo experienced “activation.” Their term “activation” is used to describe violent and or suicidal behavior. The authenticity of the Lilly-Prozac documents has not been disputed.”

See: http://www.ahrp.org/infomail/05/01/27.php.

The link to violence associated with antidepressants is the writing on the wall for all now to see, a link that for well over a decade has been present, but has been willfully and deliberately ignored by those with vested interests in, and ties to, the multi billion dollar pharmaceutical profiteering occurring within this nation. This profiteering, time and time again, continues to override the health and safety of the public.

This “writing on the wall” is further confirmed by the FDA’s own thorough independent examination of all the clinical trial data of the SSRI antidepressants reported to the FDA, in April 2004, which led to the FDA requiring that all antidepressant drugs, including Prozac, carry explicit warnings, referred to as “blackbox,” that apply to anyone taking these antidepressants. These warnings point to the obvious, which is, that not all these drugs are as “safe” or as “mild,” as drug companies, and those with financial ties to drug companies, would have the public believe them to be.

According to the FDA’s own admission, these drugs are associated with very real risks.

“The emergence of anxiety, agitation, panic attacks, insomnia, irritability, hostility (aggressiveness), impulsivity, akathisia (psychomotor restlessness), hypomania, and mania have been reported in adult and pediatric patients being treated with antidepressants…” See: http://www.fda.gov/cder/drug/antidepressants/default.htm

Dr. Steven Galson, from the FDA has received our organization’s request for the FDA to launch a full investigation into this urgent matter, immediately. Ablechild strongly urges all to fax Dr. Galson with a request for a formal public statement into this matter. In addition, we urge every individual to request that the FDA conduct a full investigation into the school shootings occurring nationwide, and their link to antidepressant induced violence, mania, and terror. This terror must end, accountability is long overdue.

Dr. Steven Galson
Fax: 301-594-6197
FDA phone number is 301-594-5400

For more information on antidepressants and associated “blackbox” warnings, mental health concerns regarding children and psychiatric drugs go to www.ablechild.org.

Connecticut Education Committee Fails to Take Up Parental Informed Consent Bill. Parental rights are ignored, with no public hearing in sight

March 7th, 2005 | Press Releases

Patricia Weathers
President
www.ablechild.org
(845) 677-8115

Sheila Matthews
National Vice President
www.ablechild.org
(203) 966-8419

  Hartford, Connecticut Legislative Education Committee failed to act on a parental informed consent bill that would ensure that parents receive full informed consent prior to any psychiatric testing being done on their children in public schools. This bill HB #5328 was written to safeguard parental rights and would have ensured that each parent be provided with certain regulations and amendments, informing them of their basic right to “opt out” of psychiatric testing for their children through state public schools. Connecticut was a frontrunner in protecting parental rights, by being the first state to pass a law to prohibit schools from recommending psychotropic drugs to parents for their children. This first state law prompted several other states to take similar action in response to a parental outcry, in which reports by parents of schools coercing them to place their children on psychotropic drugs (e.g. Ritalin) to remain in school became all too common. The states’ response and chain reaction, in turn, led to similar Federal legislation, “The Prohibition on Mandatory Medication Amendment,” signed into law by the President December 3, 2004.

This informed consent bill comes on the heels of many disturbing occurrences, which have brought the issue of labeling and “medicating” children national attention. Just last year the FDA launched two sets of hearings into the safety and efficacy of antidepressants in children. In response to these hearings a massive Federal Congressional hearing was convened on this same matter, as well as, to review the FDA’s lack of accountability and financial conflicts of interest. More recent events show Health Canada suspending its marketing of Adderall XR, a psychotropic drug and stimulant used in the “treatment” of ADHD, due to related deaths.

In the wake of so much turmoil and grave concerns, an informed consent bill, looks like a safety net where there is none. The bottom line is that parents cannot make educated decisions without being provided with all the facts. Today, schools continue to profile children for mental disorders like ADHD by using subjective checklists, rating scales, or assessments, not even endorsed or approved by local, state or federal government. Parents are not being told this. These same subjective psychiatric assessments for ADHD were removed from the state of Neuvo Leon in Mexico last year by the Secretary of Education herself, due to their subjective and unscientific nature.

The culmination of events questioning the safety and efficacy of behavior modifying drugs on children, and the subjective assessments used in psychiatric diagnoses, should not be discounted. Everyone needs to be asking why the state’s education committee blatantly has turned a blind eye to parental rights, and has disregarded widespread concerns without providing for a hearing on this matter.

More pointedly, we should be asking why America , or her states, is not ensuring parental rights and protecting children’s health and safety.

For more information on ADHD, informed consent, and mental health within education please visit our site at www.ablechild.org.

“Full Access” to Mental Health Failed Pittman Boy

February 4th, 2005 | Press Releases

Patricia Weathers
President
www.ablechild.org
(845) 677-8115

Sheila Matthews
National Vice President
www.ablechild.org
(203) 966-8419

 Excerpt: “Didn’t Your Brain have to tell you to Do it?” State’s Attorney questioned the gun expert In the State of South Carolina vs. Pittman

The Christopher Pittman tragedy is being played out in America this week in a small South Carolina courtroom where he is standing trial for the shooting deaths of his grandparents over three years ago. Now, a fifteen year old slender, inconspicuous boy, Christopher is being tried as an adult for the crime which he committed at age twelve, a crime that the defense can legitimately argue was induced by the drug, Zoloft, long suspected of causing possible mania and psychotic episodes and recently linked to suicide ideation.

Pfizer, the maker of the drug Zoloft appeared in court earlier in the week asking that the judge exclude from the defense, certain documents pertaining to their drug, arguing that these documents were “subject to protective orders” in another civil case. This is reminiscent of the October 2004 Congressional Hearings where Pfizer, along with other pharmaceutical giants, was mandated by the Committee to disclose all negative clinical data regarding its SSRI class antidepressant, data which had previously been withheld from the FDA and from the General Public.

At the same time, as the state attempts to prosecute this boy and eradicate any responsibility that this drug had on his mind at the time of the crime, it must dispute the growing evidence linking the drug with violence and mania. It must then prove safety and efficacy for the use in children. The state’s job looks insurmountable considering the FDA itself did not approve Zoloft for use in children.

The State’s gun expert showed the jury how to load and shoot the gun that was used to commit the crime. This demonstration led to a revealing question posed by the State’s own attorney, Barney Giese, “Doesn’t your brain have to tell you to do it?” For better or worse, the state finds itself in a dilemma, relying on psychiatrists own admissions that the drug Zoloft changes brain chemistry and alters human behavior.

Christopher Pittman did not arrive at this courtroom solely by his own actions, others bear responsibility. This boy had “full access” to mental health “treatment” with no barriers. This “full access” altered the course of his life. As Christopher Pittman faces life in prison, one must wonder: If he did not receive this questionable mental health “treatment”, would the outcome be the same? More precisely, as disturbing as it is, it is not where Christopher Pittman goes from here, but where he has been.

For further information regarding antidepressant risks in use in children and legal cases pending visit www.ablechild.org

Lt. Governor Sullivan Throws Connecticut Taxpayers’ Money to the Wind, Proposing $34 Million Dollars on State Mental Health.

December 28th, 2004 | Press Releases

Patricia Weathers
President
www.ablechild.org
(845) 677-8115

Sheila Matthews
National Vice President
www.ablechild.org
(203) 966-8419

 Some Connecticut residents call Sullivan’s new proposal just plain wasteful spending, exorbitant plans for throwing Connecticut’s money away without addressing the immediate need for an overhaul in what they deem is a Broken Mental Health system.

Hartford , Connecticut . Lt. Gov. Kevin Sullivan’s recent press release “Sullivan Unveils Mental Health Reform Package” has raised more than a few eyebrows across the state from children right advocates, as well as from victims of mental health abuse. Sullivan proposes to spend a whopping $34 Million on mental health in a one-year period alone. This money would be spent on additional services and programs without addressing the need for reforms in many areas of the current mental health system. This added funding for areas that have not proved themselves successful should be viewed critically and be cause for great public concern.

To give observers an inside view of the current system and its expenditures, they need only look at the many departments offering mental health services to the public.

Currently the State’s Department of Social Services has operating expenses of just under $200 million. This department carries program expenses, many of which are mental health based, of over $3.5 billion per year. The Connecticut Department of Children and Family Services both have operating expenses at over ½ a billion dollars per year. This spending is taking place without any accountability. Lack of accountability is two-fold, comprising of the State’s own failure to hold the department heads, as well as the many vendors of mental health services and programs accountable for justifying the need for the mental health programs/services that they are using and or soliciting. Furthermore the State is failing to hold all those providing mental health programs/services to the highest standards, by not requiring them to provide comprehensive reports demonstrating their success rates.

To spend additional money on any mental health services without seeing a track record for programs and or services already offered within the State should alarm all Connecticut taxpayers.

Ablechild, a national grassroots parent organization, with members in Connecticut advocating for both children and parental rights, had the opportunity to attend and testify at one of Lt. Governor Sullivan’s town hall meetings.

Ablechild was eager to share its concerns regarding the protection of human rights and the critical need for expanding mental health services beyond that of psychiatry, asking for the State to consider advocates and vendors employing non-drug and non-invasive programs/services for parents and children throughout the state. Alarmingly this town hall meeting consisted mostly of current mental health vendors asking for more money. What was obvious was that there was little evidence of success in their current programs with a basic lack of both new ideas and different types of strategies that might turn an obvious failed approach around.

“Lack of accountability is a big part of mental health and is a huge problem right now. The public should be aware and informed of all mental health programs being offered by the State. This would entail a disclosure of whether or not a program or service is successful or not. The fact that we are allowing what is equivalent to frivolous spending on programs that have not been proven successful should not be allowed to continue,” said Ms. Sheila Matthews, National Vice President of Ablechild and a Connecticut resident concerned with informed consent and the right to privacy. Ms. Matthews has advocated in Connecticut on behalf of victims of mental health abuse, many of whom have come to Ablechild for help in regards to mental health services forced upon them by State agencies and vendors receiving state mental health funds.

The question that should be raised from all of this is: When do we say enough is enough? Are we going to allow this ridiculous amount of spending without accountability to continue? Or are we going to put our foot down and hold those responsible, for truly providing us with higher standards? Accountability and honesty is what all citizens and residents of Connecticut should be demanding from the State. Anything less is simply not enough.

To read more on mental health and current abuse within mental health, please go to www.ablechild.org.

Blue Cross Issues Warnings to Doctors Prescribing Drugs with Suicide Links. Will Insurance Companies Continue to Deny Death Protections for Suicide Victims?

November 16th, 2004 | Press Releases

Patricia Weathers
President
www.ablechild.org
(845) 677-8115

Sheila Matthews
National Vice President
www.ablechild.org
(203) 966-8419

 News that Blue Cross Insurance are warning physicians to exercise care and caution when prescribing antidepressants comes as no surprise in lieu of the recent antidepressant crisis that has plagued America for so long now and has recently come to a swift and direct result. Scrambling for damage control is a normal response under the circumstances by insurance companies nationwide. Blue Cross simply follows suit. Their actions should be viewed cautiously and with enough skepticism from those many Americans left victimized and harmed by antidepressant use. Many want to believe that insurance companies are operating in the best interest and safety of the patient. Others more attune to reality remain skeptical. What truly motivates insurance companies to take this initiative in warning doctors to be careful?

The bottom line is that the FDA has issued Black Box Warnings on all highly marketable Antidepressants after conducting a long investigation. Even with insurmountable evidence to establish their link to suicide this investigation dragged on. In a twisted and at times almost unbelievable fashion, Congress themselves had to step in to demand that the FDA disclose its data regarding certain drugs. Frustrating, and at times even ludicrous, this investigation revealed not only a clear definitive link to suicide by these drugs, but the FDA’s and drug industries desperate attempts to hide, cover-up, conceal, distort (call it what you may) clinical trial data.

In light of all these facts, it is little wonder that insurance companies are gearing up to minimize loss. Their logic in warning doctors to err on the side of caution when prescribing antidepressants is used in an attempt to save them billions in potential lawsuits.

Take for example, in the past, if a member of your family committed suicide and was taking an antidepressant or withdrawing from an antidepressant, your legal recourse, and protections under insurance is difficult at best and more often than not, nonexistent. Now up the stakes, by throwing the fact that these drugs have black box warnings on them, clearly spelling out their potential for harm. Insurance companies are between a rock and a hard place, under the gun to justify not paying claims to potential victims of the antidepressant suicide fallout.

An industry that has previously been in the driver’s seat, one that ultimately has had the final say in denying suicide victims claims, no longer has an unobstructed path to tread down. It treads today on shaky ground; no longer sure that denying death claims due to suicide, when antidepressants are involved, is in its best interest.

Accountability measures need to be enacted that would ensure that the families of victims of this antidepressant suicide crisis receive immediate protection and justice in the form of financial compensation.

Several flaws in a questionable system stress the importance of accountability here where it has been previously lacking. They are as follows:

  • Proper and full informed consent needs to be provided to the patient in writing prior to any psychiatric “treatment”. This entails revealing to the potential patient the risk of suicide when prescribing an antidepressant.
  • Toxicity testing on suicide victims is not mandated and needs to be required. Victim’s families are not provided with the information on the importance of toxicity screening and are not given the actual procedure on how to request testing at the time of death.
  • Suicides have been and are still routinely blamed on a person’s mental state or a person’s psychiatric diagnosis, rather than on the psychiatric “treatment” that the person had received prior to his death. This occurs routinely without scientific backing or verification of it being a fact. In this way, drug harm, is often overlooked or disregarded.
  • Overall, s uicides are rarely investigated on a national level. This prevents critical information from being gathered and used to factor into determining possible links or causes of suicide. Statistics need to be obtained.
  • Under “Right to Treatment”, insurance companies have been required to cover dangerous and risky psychiatric “treatment” even when the diagnosis itself does not withstand evidence-based criteria. Simply put, a person is diagnosed with a psychiatric disorder based on lists of subjective behaviors rather than on confirming, objective blood tests or brain scans.

The overall picture is one that shows the drug industry, and the psychiatric Industry conveniently not being held accountable. Both groups arm themselves with strong lobbying groups in Washington whose sole purpose is to grease the palms of our political representatives.

In the midst of all this confusion, insurance companies are left with half-hearted attempts at restoring order in a disordered and chaotic system.

For more information on the risks of suicide and antidepressants and the recent “Black Box Warnings” on antidepressants, please visit us at www.ablechild.org.

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