New Information About Adam Lanza’s Mental Health Treatment Reveals Multiple Drugs

March 11th, 2014 | Breaking News

New information regarding Sandy Hook shooter, Adam Lanza, has recently been made public, adding to the already growing list of questions surrounding the Newtown shooting incident and Connecticut’s subsequent rush to increase mental health services.

With the March 10th release of The New Yorker article, “The Reckoning: The Father of the Sandy Hook killer searches for answers,” by Andrew Solomon, serious questions have been raised about the State Police investigation and the statements provided by personnel of the Yale Child Study Center, where reportedly Lanza was last treated.

The Reckoning author, Andrew Solomon, reports the following:

“Kathleen Koenig, a nurse specialist in psychiatry at Yale, gave some follow-up treatment. While seeing her, Adam tried Lexapro, which Fox had prescribed. Nancy reported, “on the third morning he complained of dizziness. By that afternoon he was disoriented, his speech was disjointed, he couldn’t even figure out how to open his cereal box. He was sweating profusely…it was actually dripping off his hands. He said he couldn’t think…He was practically vegetative.” Later the same day, she wrote, “He did nothing but sit in his dark room staring at nothing.”  Adam stopped taking Lexapro and never took psychotropics again, which worried Koenig. She wrote, “While Adam likes to believe that he’s completely logical, in fact, he’s not at all, and I’ve called him on it.” She said he had a biological disorder and needed medication. “I told him he’s living in a box right now, and the box will only get smaller over time if he doesn’t get some treatment.”

Remember that, until 2007, Lanza’s primary psychiatrist was Dr. Paul Fox who, in 2012, accused of having sexual relations with his patients, surrendered his license to practice medicine in New York and Connecticut, destroyed his records and moved to New Zealand.

Now Solomon is reporting that Dr. Fox had prescribed the antidepressant, Lexapro, and reportedly was working with the Yale Child Study Center’s Kathleen Koenig on Adam’s case.  Nancy Lanza apparently was very concerned about what appeared to be an adverse reaction to the mind-altering Lexapro and wrote copious notes about Adam’s behavior while on Lexapro.  More importantly, Solomon is reporting, apparently based on information gleaned from his extensive interviews with Peter Lanza, that Adam never took psychotropics again.

This important information does not jibe with the information Yale’s Kathleen Koenig provided to investigators and made public in the State’s Police Report of the shooting incident. Most importantly, the public only now, 15-months after the fact, is being made aware of a second psychiatric drug prescribed to Lanza and a second adverse reaction.

Five days after the shooting incident, investigators interviewed Kathleen Koenig. According to the police summary of Koenig’s interview the following was revealed.

“Koenig prescribed medication: Celexa – antidepressant/anti-anxiety.”

“Koenig recommended Adam Lanza participate in follow-up visits.”

“Koenig described Nancy Lanza’s response to her recommendations as “non-compliant.”

“Specifically, immediately after prescribing a small dose of Celexa to Adam Lanza, Koenig received a phone call from Nancy Lanza which reported her son was “unable to raise his arm.” Nancy Lanza was reporting her son was attributing this symptom to the medication. Nancy Lanza stated due to her son’s symptoms, he would be discontinuing use of the medication. Koenig attempted to convince Nancy Lanza that the medication was not causing any purported symptoms which Adam Lanza might be experiencing. However, Nancy Lanza was not receptive to Koenig’s reasoning. Nancy Lanza missed at least one scheduled appointment (unknown date) and failed to schedule subsequent appointments for Adam Lanza. Koenig did contact Dr. Paul Fox and agreed that his behavioral-based therapy would remain the primary course of treatment for Adam Lanza. She stated that Adam Lanza never returned for follow-up visits.”

According to the State Police Report, Koenig acknowledges that she had prescribed Adam Lanza the mind-altering drug, Celexa, and that Nancy Lanza had “immediately” reported what she believed to be serious adverse reactions to the drug. This is where it gets interesting.

If Lanza never returned to the Yale Child Study Center for follow-up visits and Koenig believed Nancy Lanza was “non-compliant,” when was the Lexapro prescribed?  Based on Solomon’s reporting it certainly appears that the Lexapro had been prescribed while Adam was being treated at Yale, yet the Lexapro incident apparently was not reported to investigators by Koenig.

Additionally, Koenig was advised on two occasions that Lanza had adverse reactions to psychiatric drugs prescribed to him – the Celexa and Lexapro. Why was information about the adverse reaction to Celexa provided to State investigators and not the adverse reaction to Lexapro?

On both occasions, when confronted with Nancy Lanza’s report of an adverse reaction to a drug, Koenig apparently pooh-poohed these concerns stating, “he had a biological disorder and needed medication,” and she “attempted to convince Nancy Lanza that the medication was not causing any purported symptoms which Adam Lanza might be experiencing.” Ultimately, it seems that Koenig labeled Nancy Lanza “non-compliant,” when in reality it appears this mother was acting responsibly.

One has to wonder how informed Koenig is when it comes to psychiatric drugs.  First, there is no medical/scientific evidence to support Koenig’s claim that any psychiatric disorder is “biological.”  Secondly, the information provided by Nancy Lanza about the adverse reaction to the Celexa actually is one of the serious side effects of the drug – “stiff, rigid muscles.” Adam had complained that he could not lift his arm. And Nancy Lanza also told Koenig that Adam was “sweating profusely.” This also is an adverse side effect of Lexapro.

Unfortunately, Solomon did not provide information in his article about the date the Lexapro was prescribed.  However, because Solomon wrote that “Adam stopped taking Lexapro and never took psychotropics again, which worried Koenig,” we can assume that it was during the time that Adam was receiving treatment at the Yale Child Study Center.

Based on the fact that Adam did not “participate in follow-up visits” to the Yale Child Study Center after the Celexa incident, then the above information seems inaccurate. According to Koenig’s statement to police, Celexa was the only drug that Adam received and that was the end of the relationship with the Yale Child Study Center.

Beyond the fact that the data provided by Solomon about Koenig’s statements appears to be contradicting the State Police Report, what also becomes abundantly clear is that Koenig appears to be completely unwilling to accept, as real, Nancy Lanza’s reports about the medication.  Koenig does not recommend discontinuation, nor does she recommend that the adverse reactions be reported to the FDA’s MedWatch drug reporting system.

More bizarre, though, given that the Yale Child Study Center appears to be pivotal in Lanza’s mental health care, is that Dr. Ezra Griffith (a psychiatrist) of Yale University was chosen by Connecticut Governor Dannel P. Malloy to sit on the Sandy Hook Advisory Commission, which is tasked with making recommendations about mental health care in the state. Furthermore, the Yale Child Study Center testified before the Advisory Commission.  Is this not a serious conflict of interest?

Nevertheless, the point is, of course, that there is a problem with the information about Adam Lanza’s mental health care.  Specifically, when did Adam Lanza stop taking psychiatric medication? In fact, what medications had Lanza been prescribed throughout his life?  Why has no information about Lanza’s mental health for the last five years of his life been made public? Did Nancy Lanza uncharacteristically decide to stop providing mental health treatment for Adam after his negative experience at the Yale Child Study Center?

No one knows. And that is why all of Lanza’s mental health records need to be made public. Until that time, more information about Lanza’s mental health treatment and prescribed drugs will surely leak out. In the meantime, though, important mental health decisions, affecting the entire country, will be made by lawmakers.

As often is the case when it comes to these tragic school shootings, lawmakers irresponsibly act first then, maybe, consider the facts later.  What Ablechild is learning, though, is that the “facts” of this incident keep changing, making it all the more important for the public to demand absolute transparency of all information regarding Lanza’s mental health records.

It is no secret that almost immediately Lanza’s mental health treatment was questioned.  Specifically what mental health disorder(s) did he suffer from and what “treatment” and medications had been prescribed over the course of his life.

Given that most of the psychiatric drugs available at that time had not been approved for children and that they also carried serious FDA “black box” warnings for serious behavioral adverse reactions, these questions are not unimportant.

In fact, without this information no governing body can responsibly claim the need for “increased mental health services” based on the shooting incident at Newtown.  Without knowing Lanza’s mental health history, lawmakers are subjecting the public to unnecessary and costly mental health services with zero information to support the action.

 

 

 

 

 

Billion Dollar Drug Company Law Firm Restructures Connecticut Welfare System

March 10th, 2011 | News Archive

By Bob Fiddaman and Shelia Matthews

For some time now, Sheila Matthews has been suspicious about her home state of Connecticut’s treatment of its most vulnerable children. As a mother of two children and co-founder of Ablechild, her instincts led her to scrutinize the dubious relationships among Connecticut’s Department of Children and Family Services [DCF], the pharmaceutical industry and a billion dollar law firm who has defended the likes of Pfizer Inc and Merck & Co., among others.

Sheila’s investigation has led her on a journey that links a non-profit children’s advocacy group, with assets over $15 million [2009] with nationally-renowned mass tort and class action defense law firms, to the Connecticut DCF – an $865 million bureaucracy, as described by the Connecticut Mirror.

The Connecticut DCF serves approximately 36,000 children and 16,000 families across its four Mandate Areas:

  1. Child welfare
  2. Children’s behavioral health
  3. Juvenile Services
  4. Prevention

Sheila’s Ablechild has been questioning the Connecticut DCF since 2003, when Ablechild demanded that the Connecticut DCF immediately ban the use of the antidepressant Paxil in its treatment of mental disorders after multiple studies confirmed Paxil increased the risk of suicide in children and adolescents. This was more than a year prior to America’s Food & Drug Association (FDA) announcement that all antidepressants, including Paxil, should bear a black box warning regarding this suicide risk. Ablechild was disturbed that children in state custody were being prescribed this dangerous psychotropic medication. Ablechild’s public pressure paid off, and the Connecticut DCF deemed Paxil unsafe for children and adolescents, and according to the DCF drug approval list, Paxil has not been approved for use in over eight (8) years.

In August 2003, less than one month later, Ablechild reported that the commissioner of the Connecticu DCF held a ‘behind closed doors‘ meeting with Glaxo officials. This meeting was reported by the Associated Press, who wrote:

The maker of the anti-depressant Paxil plans to meet this week with Connecticut officials, weeks after the State stopped using the drug to treat young people in its care.

GlaxoSmithKline, a British pharmaceutical company, is sending its regional medical director and a medical team to meet with officials from the Department of Children and Families. [Source]

Despite repeated requests from Ablechild, the Connecticut DCF refused to inform the public what was discussed at this secret meeting.

Eight years later, Sheila and Ablechild continue to raise concerns and investigate potential wrongdoings and conflicts within the Connecticut DCF. Last month, in February 2011, Sheila attended a meeting sponsored by the Connecticut Behavioral Health Partnership [CBHP], where its medical director, Dr Steven Kant, presented the Husky Behavioral Pharmacy Data. The CBHP is a state vendor that provides mental health services to DCF children. These services are paid, in part, by the State-run insurance program, HUSKY. Incredibly the pharmacy data presentation showed that dangerous psychotropic drugs, like Paxil, are still being prescribed to thousands of children and adolescents. In fact, the Pharmacy Data presentation showed that the HUSKY program, financed by taxpayer dollars, paid drug companies over $60 million for psychotropic drugs for Connecticut’s children and adolescents in 2009 alone – many of which are not approved by the FDA for use in the pediatric population and all of which carry the most serious warning possible regarding the risk of suicide.

According to the pharmacy data presentation: [Which can be downloaded as a Powerpoint presentation HERE]

More than 50% of HUSKY Youth Behavioral med utilizers are on stimulants.
Close to 30% of HUSKY Youth Behavioral med utilizers are on antipsychotics.

The pharmacy data also revealed the following:

Most Frequently Used Behavioral Meds for DCF-Involved Youth

Medications for ADHD

  • Ritalin (10%)
  • Adderall (5%)
  • Vyvanse (4%)
  • Strattera (3%)

Atypical Antipsychotics

  • Abilify (11%)
  • Risperdol (10%)
  • Seroquel (8%)

Anti-anxiety

  • Hydroxyzine (2.5%)

Antidepressants

  • Prozac (4.5%)
  • Zoloft (4%)
  • Zyban (3%)
  • Desyrel (2.5%)
  • Celexa (2%)

Mood Stabilizers

  • Lithum (3%)
  • Depakote (3%)
  • Lamictal (2.5%)

Curiously, none of the above medications are on the Connecticut DCF list of approved/unapproved drugs listed in its DCF PMAC document.

With this in mind, Sheila Matthews contacted Dr Steven Kant and inquired as to whether any of the above drugs were approved by the Connecticut DCF for use in children.

Dr Kant replied:

… the answer to your question is not that straight forward.. . . Medications may be indicated by age and/or by specific treatment needs so it is not either a simply “yes” or “no”. Also, some medications may have the age indication but for a totally different condition, such as anti epileptic condition. . .Also FDA indications are static, they do not change over time though medical practice is constantly evolving…

Contradicting the very document that lists Connecticut’s approved and unapproved drugs, a “check-off” list that verifies the status of medications, Dr Kant replied, “I don’t think a “check off” for each medication would work in terms of verifying their status.”

With such an ambiguous response from Dr. Kant, we found the DCF Approved Medication List on the Internet. This particular version was revised in 2009.

It appears that the DCF has approved drugs in children that have not been approved for children by the FDA. In fact, the FDA has issued multiple advisories and alerts since 2004 about the increased risk of suicide in children, adolescents and young adults up to age 25 who are treated with psychotropic medications.

And while Fluoxetine (Prozac) is the only medication approved by the FDA for use in treating depression in children ages 8 and older, it still carries a black box warning regarding the risk of suicide.

In contrast, the DCF seems to be ignoring the conclusions of the FDA. Its list of approved medication in children and adolescents include every single antidepressant except paroxetine [Paxil] and venlafaxine [Effexor].

Forest Lab’s citalopram [Celexa] – APPROVED

Forest Lab’s escitalopram [Lexapro] – APPROVED

Solvay Pharmaceuticals’ fluvoxamine [Luvox] – APPROVED

Pfizer’s sertraline [Zoloft] – APPROVED

GlaxoSmithKline’s bupropion [Wellbutrin -also marketed as an anti-smoking cessation drug under the name of Zyban] – APPROVED [1]

Alarmingly, the DCF has produced a guide entitled, “MEDICATIONS USED FOR BEHAVIORAL & EMOTIONAL DISORDERS – A GUIDE FOR PARENTS, FOSTER PARENTS, FAMILIES, YOUTH, CAREGIVERS, GUARDIANS, AND SOCIAL WORKERS” where it writes, “Most of the side effects from the medications are mild and will lessen or go away after the first few weeks of treatment.” The guide also points out possible side effects of SSRI’s/SNRI’s:

SSRIs and SNRIs:

  • Headache
  • Nervousness
  • Nausea
  • Insomnia
  • Weight Loss

One of the most dangerous side effects of these medications, suicidal thoughts/ideation, doesn’t even make the 5 bullet-pointed list. The Guide does, however, add the following: “Watch for worsening of depression and thoughts about suicide.”

The DCF Approved Medication List writes:

“The DCF Approved Medication List is a list of psychotropic medications that has been carefully established by the Psychotropic Medication Advisory Committee, a group of DCF and community professionals.”

Sheila has since investigated other advocacy groups that were concerned about the off-label prescribing of psychiatric medications to youths in state custody. This is where she stumbled upon Children’s Rights, a non-profit charity based in New York City.

In 2005, Children’s Rights employed ten (10) attorneys and a staff of 31. It claims to use its expertise to change child welfare red tape and scrutinize failing systems. If the child welfare system fails to respond, Children’s Rights files a lawsuit. If successful, it enforces reform and then monitors its implementation.

In 1989, Children’s Rights had in fact filed a suit against William O’Neill and the Connecticut state Department of Children and Youth Services [DCYS].

The suit charged that an overworked and underfunded DCYS failed to provide services including abuse and neglect investigations, adoption, foster care, mental health care, caseloads and staffing. The case has been pending for over twenty (20) years, and while there have been numerous arguments that DCYS should be more inclusive or has failed to provide certain services, the issue of massive off-label prescription of psychotropic medications has never been brought to the court’s attention.

Children’s Rights is chaired by Alan C Myers, a partner at Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher and Flom, a billion dollar law firm which represents the pharmaceutical industry in mass torts and class actions. Myers is also co-head of the firm’s REIT Group [Real Estate Investment Trust].

Also, listed on the Children’s Rights website are individuals and law firms that have served as co-counsel on Children’s Rights’ legal campaigns to reform America’s failing child welfare systems, including:

Missouri Shook Hardy & Bacon – Eli Lilly Co. and Forest Labs, defended the original Wesbeker Prozac trial in Kentucky and still defend Prozac, Celexa and Lexapro.

New JerseyDrinker Biddle & Reath – GlaxoSmithKline attorneys – defended Paxil as local counsel in Philadelphia cases.

OklahomaKaye Scholer LLP – provides work in Pharmaceutical Products Liability defense and employs an attorney who was former General Counsel of Pfizer, Inc.

A particular success for Skadden Arps occurred in 2010 when it secured a summary judgement ruling for Pfizer Inc. in a suit filed by two insurance companies who sought $200 million in damages for Pfizer’s predecessors alleged “off-label” marketing of its epilepsy drug, Neurontin.

Furthermore, in February 2011, Skadden Arps secured the dismissal of over 200 cases in a multi-district litigation pending against their client, Pfizer Inc. The plaintiffs had alleged injuries related to the use of Pfizer’s anti-epilepsy drug, Neurontin.

Neurontin, the generic version is called gabapentin, is prescribed by psychiatrists for a variety of “off-label” indications. It is often tried as an alternative treatment, when patients are unable to tolerate the side effect of more proven mood stabilizers such as lithium. [2]

Gabapentin has also been associated with an increased risk of suicidal acts or violent deaths.

This is a drug that has been known to cause behavioral problems, which include unstable emotions, hostility, aggression, hyperactivity or lack of concentration.

Children dependent on child welfare systems have rights and, according to its web page, Children’s Rights is dedicated to protecting them.

It should come as no surprise that the site fails to discuss the off-label prescription of non-approved psychotropic medications to children and adolescents, unless this falls under the ‘abuse and neglect’ category?

If Children’s Rights’ motive was to accomplish fixing the child welfare system then why hasn’t it investigated why thousands of children under state care are prescribed “off-label” psychiatric drugs? With a partner in a billion dollar pro-pharmaceutical law firm as its Chair, and supporters who also defend pharmaceutical products, is it safe to assume that its stance on the drugging of children is one that is being ignored?

Children’s Rights push to remove abused and neglected children into safety.

The basic question always comes down to trust. When power, money and a good cause is mixed, it is imperative to check motives. We would be less of a society if we didn’t check out all the facts. Abuse and neglect exist, always has and always will, but society is obligated to ensure those victims are not transformed into “good cause victims” and expensed out. There is no doubt we have a right to question the system and those who claim to promote change for the good of the children within it.

Children’s Rights Chairman, Alan C. Myers, Medical Director of Connecticut Behavioral Health Partnership, Steven Kant and the Connecticut Department of Children and Families may get their knickers in a twist with regard to an advocate of Ablechild and a blogger from Birmingham, UK questioning their motives but hey, what’s the downside of shinning a light on all these players, be they good or bad players?

Sheila’s concern is that Children’s Rights with its multi-million dollar budget and with the help of its billion dollar law firms, will continue to ignore the risks of these unapproved and dangerous medications, under the guise of helping our nation’s most vulnerable children. The question remains: how can the lawyers who defend pscyhotropic drugs also be the same lawyers who advocate for abused and neglected children to get into state welfare programs which place these children on the same drugs? The conflict is clear and obvious – and it poses an unmistakable danger to children who truly need our help.

[1] Bupropion [also known as Wellbutrin, Zyban] is a non-tricyclic antidepressant.
[2] Gabapentin

Bob Fiddaman is the author of the Seroxat Sufferers blog and the book, “The evidence, however, is clear… the Seroxat scandal.” Chipmunka Publishing.

Sheila Matthews is the co-founder of Ablechild and a mother of two children.

Is the 14-Year-Old Shooting Suspect in West Oak Middle School, SC Another Failed Outcome of Mental Health Treatment?

September 29th, 2016 | Breaking News

The 14-year old suspect in the Townville Elementary School shooting was expelled from West-Oak Middle School after bringing a hatchet to school last year, according to news reports.

West Oak Middle School expulsion policy requires the school to refer the student to the department of juvenile justice based on the fact he brought a weapon to school. The DJJ process clearly indicates the suspect would have undergone a mental health evaluation and had plenty of access to mental health treatment prior to the shooting.

What’s not clear, did the suspect receive mental health services and psychiatric drug treatment prior to the Hatchet incident at school? It is often difficult to gain access to early mental health treatment records. However, the public did gain access to the Sandy Hook mass shooter’s early mental health treatment records through the Child Advocate’s report, but didn’t gain access to the last five years leading up to the mass murder at Sandy Hook.  The State is still withholding those records.

Lanza’s primary treating psychiatrist, Paul Fox, who surrendered his license to practice is now facing felon charges for sexual abuse of a former patient. Fox told police during the Sandy Hook police investigation he still retains the billing records, but destroyed the actual mental health records of Lanza.  Fox failed to follow record retention law and public notification law that he was no longer practicing.  Connecticut didn’t enforce either one of those laws.

The Child Advocate’s report on Lanza actually showed he had plenty of access to mental health and participated in the birth to three mental health programs.  In addition, Lanza was home bound through Newtown public school system and under the care of discredited psychiatrist Fox at that time.  Dr. Robert King of Yale Child Study Center also treated Adam Lanza.  Dr. King is heavily involved in landmark mental health research that involves FDA approval.

The public would benefit from mental health billing information, the Yale file, and the diary of the mother, Nancy Lanza, found at the crime scene.

Dr. Robert King and Nancy Koenig of Yale claimed that Nancy Lanza refused treatment for her son; however, the police report indicates that Nancy Lanza reported an adverse drug event to Yale’s Koenig and Dr. King.  There was no indication that Dr. King or Koenig advised Nancy Lanza to report the adverse drug event to the FDA, instead Dr. King and Koenig of Yale labeled Nancy Lanza as noncompliant.

Time again the school shootings are linked to mental health “treatment” and deadly outcomes. This is an excellent time to question the condition of the mental health system, and ask two fundamental questions. Is the policies pushed in the aftermath of Sandy Hook of aggressive outpatient services, and “shy of forced medication” actually increasing our mental health crisis and the deadly outcomes?  The second question, Are public health departments, like Connecticut, protecting behavioral health vendors, bad psychiatrists, and covering up dangerous, experimental mental health treatment on children in crisis?

AbleChild contacted the SC Anderson County Sheriff’s office to encourage them to explore the psychiatric drug link, question the treating psychiatrist, and investigate any behavioral health vendor involvement.  AbleChild also asked if the suspect’s blood was taken at time of arrest.  The Sheriff’s office thanked AbleChild for our suggestions and didn’t have the information on the blood work up at this time.

Don’t Say No One Died at Sandy Hook!

September 2nd, 2016 | Breaking News

Don’t say no one died at Sandy Hook! According to Politico, Hillary Clinton called out alternative media king, Alex Jones, using politico’s truth meter. The results are in: Hillary is telling the truth about what Alex Jones has said, albeit not exact wording, about the Sandy Hook shooting incident.

Ok, so exactly what does this mean for the taxpayer and why is it important in the political landscape?

The State Police took a year to gather evidence and facts about the mass murder in the little town of Sandy Hook, Newtown, Connecticut, where 20 children and 6 adults were killed. Yet, oddly enough, within weeks of the incident, sweeping, costly, laws were written and passed by invited “stakeholders.”

Most would agree that it’s time to let the victims move on with their lives. What is needed, though, is a discussion about the policies that were put in place much too soon to legitimately address the cause(s) of the shooting.

After all, the all-encompassing mental health legislation was passed without legislators having the ability to read the police investigation, which wasn’t released for a full year after Public Act 13-3 was passed. The sweeping mental health legislation was funded by an executive order.

This makes Sandy Hook a political issue worthy of discussion based on facts, not a victim cause or victim denial.

Because there are numerous issues with the “facts” surrounding Sandy Hook, it is the job of every taxpayer to question the investigative findings and look for solutions that actually address the causes, least of which is the question surrounding Adam Lanza’s mental health records.

AbleChild is currently following the pre-trial events of Paul Fox, the former primary treating psychiatrist of Adam Lanza, who still could provide investigators with his billing records (which he admitted he still retained). These records would provide insight into Lanza’s mental health during the missing five years leading up to the shooting.

Whether investigators have even requested this information is anyone’s guess. But the taxpayers are paying the bill for costly mental health legislation that no one in the legislature can prove was needed as a response to any mental health issues.

Paul Fox presents an opportunity for the State to finally obtain, and consider, the needed mental health information about Lanza that may end much of the speculation surrounding the shooting.

Politico’s “truth meter” should not be the bases for fact checking the Sandy Hook shooting. But, if that is what it takes to finally begin an open conversation about many of the missing pieces of the horrific event, then so be it.

AbleChild Attends Sandy Hook Psychiatrist’s Pre-Trial

July 28th, 2016 | Breaking News, Press Releases

July 26, 2016, Danbury, Connecticut Criminal Court, Paul Fox, is the last known treating psychiatrist of Adam and is facing criminal charges for multiple counts of sexual assault of a former patient. Beyond these charges, Fox could offer much needed information in the Sandy Hook investigation.

As is well known, Fox’s mental health assessment was incorporated into the final report that the State Attorney, Stephen Sedensky, used to prepare the final report on Sandy Hook, and Fox’s psychiatric assessment and treatment of Lanza was used in the mainstream media to profile Lanza and address the motive of the crime.

Sedensky, who released the final report that determined Adam Lanza acted alone in the Sandy Hook massacre, is prosecuting the Fox case and has an opportunity to provide to the public much needed mental health information from Fox.

AbleChild contacted Sedensky regarding the police investigation conducted in the aftermath of Sandy Hook to inquiry about the key mental health records Fox claimed he destroyed two years too early, which is now known to be in violation of Connecticut law along with Fox’s failure to notify current and former patients he was discontinuing his practice.

The internal investigation conducted by the public health department, that prompted Fox to surrender his license, also was discussed with Sedensky. Since AbleChild’s inquiry, the former patient involved in the “internal” inquiry of Fox has come forward and Sedensky now is taking action against Fox.

However, one must ask Sedensky, why did he avoid the questions relating to the quality, methods, and ethics of the mental health treatment Lanza received under Fox while preparing his final report on Lanza? Why was this important information missing from his report?

The investigation conducted by the Connecticut State Police, and reviewed by multiple state agencies, led to the Governor appointing the Sandy Hook Advisory Commission to review the findings and make legislative recommendations.

Connecticut State Police detectives investigating Lanza’s mental health history first became aware of Fox’s relationship with the female patient for which Fox now has been charged with sexual assault. This information was held by the state agency on public health. Why, when public policy PA 13-3 was being rush through the State Legislature to increase mental health and pass sweeping gun control, was this information not share by the state agency with legislators?

Fox and his attorney brokered a deal with the State Department of Public Health’s Healthcare Quality and Safety branch, allowing the psychiatrist to surrender his license in Connecticut and New York.

The Sandy Hook police investigation would lead investigators to contact the “relocated” psychiatrist, in New Zealand, to inquire about the medical records of Adam Lanza.

According to the police investigation, Fox told the investigators he had the medical billing records for Lanza stored in the US, the next day when investigators called Fox back to obtain more information, Fox indicated he destroyed the medical records. So, does Fox still have the billing records? Why didn’t the State charge Fox for destroying the records 2 years too early according to Connecticut Law? Also, Fox had an obligation to notify his current and former patients he was discontinuing his practice. Why didn’t the State hold him responsible for the failure to follow that law?

While this case appears to compel the State to prosecute the already investigated internal sexual assault case, it does nothing to get to the mental health treatments provided to Adam Lanza.

Additionally, the years-in-the-making Child Advocate’s report appears to be an attempt to clear Fox of answering any questions relating to his treatment of Lanza and his relationship to Nancy Lanza and the Yale Child Study Center.

The Sandy Hook Commission, appointed by the Governor, also appears to have given a pass to Fox. No one from the State of Connecticut appears to want to consider the billing records that Fox claims are stored in the United States and may yield insight into the motive for Lanza’s behavior.

Even the small town newspaper, The Newtown Bee appears to cover news stories relating to Sandy Hook that seeks legislation regarding gun control, rather than covering news seeking legislation addressing whether the mental health treatment Lanza received was adequate or even necessary.

One would expect the news organization to provide accurate information about mental health records and facts surrounding the treatment of Lanza that apparently led to the massacre in its community.

The reporting on the fact that Adam Lanza was unable to attended school because of his deteriorating psychiatric condition as determined by Fox, but at the same time Lanza made the honor roll, still has not been adequately explained. But Fox, now within reach of the State’s Attorney, could provide important information.

AbleChild will continue to watch the outcome of this very compelling case, with the hope that the State may make inquiries of Fox about Lanza’s mental health care…even if that means just getting its hands on Fox’s billing records.

 

Internal FDA Documents Link Mind Altering Psychiatric Drugs to Murder

May 12th, 2016 | Breaking News

Rare documents, that are kept far from the public view, expose the knowledge the FDA has regarding the link between mind altering psychiatric drugs and murder.

Below are internal documents that were collected through the MEDWATCH reporting system on adverse drug events collected by the FDA and obtained by Parents Against Pharma by a Freedom of Information Request. (FOIA)

These documents illustrate the importance of educating the public on the MedWatch Adverse Drug Reporting System and the known link between mind-altering psychiatric drugs and increase risk of homicide.

AbleChild vs. Chief Medical Examiner in Connecticut was the case in front of the Freedom of Information Commission in the aftermath Sandy Hook requesting the release of Adam Lanza’s mental health records, toxicology, and autopsy reports.  AbleChild submitted FDA findings in our filing.

In addition, these documents should be provided to every lawmaker to increase consumer protection laws on informed consent in the “loosely” regulated field of mental health that places us all in danger.

ParentsAgainstPharma
FDA MedWatch Prozac
FDA Prozac MedWatch2

PostMarketing
Highlights
Vyvanse FDA MedWatch
Redacted2
LINK TO MURDER FDA Nortrityline
LINK TO MURDER FDA
RedactedProsac4
Redacted

The Arrest of Sandy Hook Killer’s Psychiatrist Raises a Host of Issues

May 8th, 2016 | Breaking News

Dr. Paul Fox, the primary psychiatrist for Sandy Hook shooter, Adam Lanza, has been charged with three felony counts of sexual assault on a then 19 year-old patient that reportedly occurred back in 2010-2011. Getting to Fox’s arrest has been a complicated journey, raising a host of issues that, frankly, need to be addressed.

First the original investigation, regarding accusations of sexual assault, was conducted four years ago in March of 2012 by the State of Connecticut Department of Public Health. During that investigation several important issues came to light, one of which involved Fox’s psychiatric drug prescribing practices.

According to the investigative file, over the course of one year, Fox prescribed what the victim called a “dynamic cocktail of psychiatric drugs.” The “constantly changing mix” of psychiatric drugs included: Ativan (anxiety), Saphris (bi-polar disorder), Abilify (schizophrenia), Nuvigil (sleep apnea, narcolepsy), Prozac (Major-depression, OCD), Zyprexa (Schizophrenia, bi-polar disorder), Xanax, and Vistaril (anxiety, tension). Vistaril also is used as a sedative and for general anesthesia.

After reviewing the above cocktail of psychiatric drugs, one can only wonder how anyone could even remotely believe the victim participated in “consensual” sex with Fox, especially in light of the victim’s comment that she was “usually drugged up out of (her) mind…” That is an understatement, and begs the question: if Fox is drugging his patient’s with cocktails of drugs, was Adam Lanza a victim of Fox’s prolific drugging?  How many different psychiatric diagnoses did Fox subjectively bestow on Adam Lanza and what kind of psychiatric “dynamic cocktail” was Lanza prescribed while a “patient” under Fox’s “care.”

Tough to know. The State refuses to release Lanza’s mental health records or autopsy/toxicology results and Fox claims to have little memory of Lanza. Fox also claims to have destroyed his medical records prior to his 2012 departure to New Zealand.   Apparently law enforcement never thought it important, at least, to review Fox’s billing records, which Fox claims still existed in December of 2012. So how about now? Has Fox retained the billing records of his patients and will law enforcement finally look at them?

This is an important question. When Fox surrendered his medical license in July 2012 he also agreed (as a condition of surrender) to adhere to the records retention laws of Connecticut (19a-14-44). Fox was required to retain all medical and billing records for patients up to seven years after the last date of “treatment.” If one accepts that Fox last saw Lanza in 2007, then Fox admits he destroyed Lanza’s “treatment” records two years too early. And, of course, one can only assume that the records of the alleged victim(s) of Fox’s reported sexual assault also have been destroyed.

Furthermore, one has to wonder what responsibility the Department of Health has when it comes to alleged sexual predators masquerading as doctors and working as counselors in the state’s universities. According to the investigation, the State Department of Health concluded that “review of the documentation identified exchanges between the patient and the respondent that exceed the boundaries of a professional doctor, patient relationship.”

But has the public health and welfare been served by allowing the doctor to simply surrender his license? Should the State be required to, at a minimum, report serious sexual assault allegations to local law enforcement?

And one simply cannot ignore what appears to be another questionable patient “treatment” problem which has arisen in New Zealand, where Fox fled to practice psychiatric counseling. Fox reportedly “treated” Nicky Stevens, a young man who died while under psychiatric care in New Zealand.

The questions regarding that case are too numerous to even consider. But one cannot help but question the obvious. If Fox surrendered his license to practice medicine and prescribe drugs in July of 2012, how was he allowed to practice psychiatric counseling and prescribe psychiatric drugs in New Zealand?

Additionally, Danbury State’s Attorney, Stephen Sedensky, will be prosecuting Fox’s case, because he tells Ablechild that the sexual assault charges are “the strongest.”   But Ablechild cannot help but wonder why Sedensky, who, according to the Sandy Hook investigation, knew about the allegations of Fox’s sexual assault, the failure of Fox to retain his records and the questionable psychiatric drugging back in 2012, didn’t initiate an investigation of Fox at that time. The information, that was available in 2012, hasn’t changed.

These are important questions because there are victims of what appear to be blatant psychiatric abuses. These are important questions because, in the immediate aftermath of Sandy Hook, Connecticut lawmakers passed sweeping, costly, mental health legislation without having any information to warrant the increased mental health services.

In fact, based on what has been revealed in the Department of Health investigation about Dr. Paul Fox, Adam Lanza’s last known primary psychiatrist, it would appear that an investigation into psychiatric practices in the state were actually needed. And if ever there was an argument for release of Lanza’s mental health records for the five years leading up to the shooting, it doesn’t get any better than simply reviewing the long-known unquestionably abusive mental health services provided by Fox.

 

 

 

 

 

Arrest of Psychiatrist Who Treated Adam Lanza May Lead to Answers in Murder Investigation

April 25th, 2016 | Breaking News

According to the Hartford Courant, “Brookfield detectives traveled to Paul Fox’s residence in Peaks Island, Maine, to take him into custody Wednesday with the assistance of Homeland Security Agents. Fox was charged with three counts of second-degree sexual assault.”

This is news. The last information that was known about Fox was that he was living and working in New Zealand. It would be of interest to know when, exactly, Fox returned to the states and whether he has been practicing psychiatry in Maine.

But this arrest, now, seems odd. After all, Fox’s alleged sexual assault problems have been public record since at least July 2012. So why the sudden interest in Dr. Paul Fox?

The Hartford Courant broke the story of Fox “voluntarily” surrendering his license to practice medicine in Connecticut and New York, before departing the country for New Zealand in 2012.

And upon learning of Fox’s position as Lanza’s primary psychiatrist, AbleChild filed a FOIA for the investigative file on Fox’s alleged sexual assault, along with a FOIA for the mental health, toxicology and autopsy records of Adam Lanza, (AbleChild vs. Chief Medical Examiner).

The investigation into Fox and the allegations of sexual assault, conducted by Diane Cybulski, Supervising Nurse Consultant, Health Quality and Safety Branch of the Department of Public Health, included not only alleged sexual misconduct, but also several other issues, including the distribution of controlled substances according to Exhibit P, (CVS Pharmacy Records), questionable billing practices and patient records retention.

For example, according to the records, during Fox’s “treatment” of his 19-year old patient, not only was Fox prescribing numerous – “three or four” – psychiatric mind-altering drugs, but the psychiatrist also was providing the patient with free drug samples (page 69 of report), and the patient’s mother reported that, “she was turning into a zombie.”

Fox billed the mother’s insurance for the patient’s drug “treatment.” But when the psychiatrist and the patient “became friends” Fox no longer billed for “counseling services.”(page 68 of report).

As for state records retention, according to the Courant, State police detectives investigating the massacre at Sandy Hook Elementary School talked with Fox in New Zealand, where he was living at the time. Fox told detectives in a Dec. 17, 2012 telephone interview that he had destroyed any records he had of his treatment of Lanza (Investigation document 00260339 -Book 7).  Based on the investigative records and state law, Fox last saw Lanza in 2007, making the destruction of the records two years too soon.

Fox did, however, advise law enforcement officials that he had retained his patient billing records. One can only wonder why investigators failed to follow this lead, as billing records offer a great deal of information about a patient’s treatment.

But, regardless of sloppy investigating, Fox’s arrest raises many issues beyond the alleged sexual assault, including the following:

*          Fox provided counseling services at a state university. Was Western Connecticut State University aware of Dr. Fox’s sexual relationships with students at the university and, if yes, did the university file a report with the Department of Public Health, any state oversight agency, or even law enforcement?

*          When information on Dr. Fox’s alleged sexual assault finally was brought to the attention of the State Department of Public Health, why was Fox given what can only be described as a “sweetheart” deal?

*          Alleged sexual abuse is not only an ethical issue, but also a criminal matter, so did the State Department of Public Health have an obligation to alert law enforcement?

*          Now that Fox has returned to the states, and clearly under the watchful eye of law enforcement, will Sandy Hook investigators request Fox’s billing records for psychiatric “treatment” of Adam Lanza?

*          Why did the state wait a year before releasing the name of Adam Lanza’s treating psychiatrist?

*          Did Adam Lanza, while under the psychiatric care of Dr. Fox or while a patient at Yale Child Study Center, participate in a clinical trial?

*          Could Nancy Lanza’s notes, now being withheld by the state, provide additional information about the treatment Adam Lanza received while under Fox’s care that might expose further violations of FDA clinical trial record retention laws?

Dr. Fox’s reemergence is odd, but it has ignited a renewed interest in the specific mental health services he provided to Sandy Hook shooter, Adam Lanza.

There still are too many unanswered questions about Lanza’s mental health history, and Dr. Fox’s return should be taken by Sandy Hook investigators as an opportunity to finally get some documentable information from, at minimum, Fox’s billing records.

Fox’s case also provides an opportunity for the state of Connecticut to conduct a review of the way medical ethics violations are handled and, perhaps, even establishing real consequences for egregious behavior by those in the medical profession.

Fox finally is being held responsible for the alleged sexual assault that lost him his medical license and, apparently, forced his swift departure from the U.S. Only time will tell if state oversight agencies and law enforcement officials will take advantage of the opportunity presented in Fox’s return.

 

 

 

Milford, CT School Sued for Student’s Mental Health Treatment Prior to Murder

March 17th, 2016 | Breaking News

According to the Newtown Patch, a recently filed lawsuit, regarding the stabbing of Maren Sanchez alleges that “Maren reported to the high school guidance department her concern that Christopher Plaskon was emotionally disturbed and was threatening to commit suicide or acts of serious self-harm by cutting himself with a knife, and that she believed it was important for high school personnel to help Plaskon, then 16, to prevent him from engaging in potentially violent conduct dangerous to himself or to others.”

With the ever-increasing number of school shootings across the nation, one must wonder if this lawsuit may be the tipping point for a national discussion on schools involvement in arbitrarily identifying students with alleged psychiatric disorders and recommending mental health “treatments,” known to be associated with an increased risks of suicide and violence?

The National Association of School Psychology, NASP, is responsible for the information that is supplied to the school psychologists that function within the school and evaluates and identifies students for eligibility for special education.  A common factor in all mass shootings and stabbings committed by students is the failure of the school system or institution to release the mental health records of the perpetrator.

The mental health records, which would reveal whether psychiatric drugs were involved during the incident, more than the choice of weapon, is the critical information needed to identify contributing factors that may help to eliminate this massive public health crisis.  Without the information contained within the mental health records, the public, as well as our lawmakers, cannot write effective legislation to protect students, families, as well as all consumers.

Is the NASP a monopoly with strong conflicts of interests that relies on privacy to shield their role in the increased risks of violence and suicide plaguing our education system?

According to the NASP services listed below, and their claim regarding the school psychologists’ unique qualifier, this lawsuit provides the public with a unique opportunity to initiate a conversation about how much power this association is given and the risks it creates for our children. After all, even NASP knows there is no known abnormality in the brain that is any alleged psychiatric disorder, making these diagnoses suspect.

Nevertheless, the NASP writes, “School psychologists are uniquely qualified members of school teams that support students’ ability to learn and teachers’ ability to teach. They apply expertise in mental health, learning, and behavior, to help children and youth succeed academically, socially, behaviorally, and emotionally.”   So, the NASP basically does it all.

Data collection and analysis
Assessment
Progress monitoring
School-wide practices to promote learning
Resilience and risk factors
Consultation and collaboration
Academic/learning interventions
Mental health interventions
Behavioral interventions
Instructional support
Prevention and intervention services
Special education services
Crisis preparedness, response, and recovery
Family-school-community collaboration
Diversity in development and learning
Research and program evaluation
Professional ethics, school law, and systems”

Is this safe? After all, it is near impossible to eliminate their involvement with a student who attends the public education system.  The NASP political influence on lawmaking only grows stronger each year.  A student has a very difficult time to refuse psychiatric evaluations and still receive special education help and is not provided informed consent on the subjective nature of their assessment tools – basically opinions of behavior.

The Milford Lawsuit is interesting in that the family seems to have chosen the right target – the school’s involvement with the perpetrator’s mental health treatment.

The State missed this opportunity in the Sandy Hook mass murder to investigate the link between mental health “treatment” and the mass shooting and to hold those treating Lanza accountable. In fact, the State used the killings to push for more mental health “treatment,” based on no evidence that Adam Lanza lacked access to school-based or community-based mental health services or that those services were not the best that money could buy. The mental health billing records, autopsy, and toxicology of Adam Lanza were never released to the public, despite AbleChild vs. Chief Medical Examiner Freedom of Information request.

What Happened to the First Amendment, Sandy Hook?

January 21st, 2016 | Press Releases

In response to Jacqueline Smith and her opinion of Professor James Tracy, two words immediately spring to mind: Toughen up. Strong reaction? Yes. But trampling on the First Amendment is serious and requires a strong response.

Smith claims that Professor Tracy doesn’t have a First Amendment right to “spew his nonsense.” There is no need to go any further in her rambling, disjointed piece. Smith simply does not understand that it is precisely this kind of “nonsense” that the Founding Fathers intended to protect.

Smith may not like, appreciate, or understand Professor Tracy’s thoughts and motives, but he has a right – and some would argue a duty – to critical thinking, and a right to publically espouse those thoughts, however repugnant they may be to Smith’s, and others, delicate sensitivities.

The problem with Smith’s thought pattern, as it pertains to the First Amendment, is that she believes that if the speech is hurtful or offensive to another then it simply is unacceptable and constitutionally unprotected. That’s not how the First Amendment works, as made clear by Smith’s own ugly diatribe directed at Professor Tracy.

Let’s not forget that the Founding Fathers believed that open dialogue was so important that they made it the FIRST Amendment, not the sixth or seventh, etc.   More importantly, that freedom of speech is unabridged and there is no caveat that the speech cannot hurt someone’s feelings.

Smith’s attack on Professor Tracy’s Constitutional rights, ultimately, is due to the Professor’s questioning of the official version of events at Sandy Hook. While Smith claims her concern is that Professor Tracy crossed the First Amendment line by making a request of Lenny Pozner, in reality, anyone remotely familiar with this important case, is fully aware that Smith’s version of events was less than unbiased.

The bigger question, though, is why questioning the official version is so offensive to an alleged “newsperson?” Professor Tracy is far from the only person raising issues about Sandy Hook, as there literally are millions of websites dedicated to questioning the events at Sandy Hook and, one would think, many more millions who read them. Surely Smith is not suggesting that all of these people are not entitled to their views on the matter and must be silenced should they dare speak out publically.

What occurred at Sandy Hook has serious repercussions for not only the families of the victims and others associated with the tragedy, but everyone who is subjected to the legislative policy that has come from the incident.

As Smith well knows, the Connecticut Legislature passed sweeping, costly mental health legislation a full year prior to the release of the investigation. In other words, the legislative action was taken without full knowledge of the facts. Nevertheless, the good folks of Connecticut must not only pay for, but live by, those emotional, not fact-based, decisions. By anyone’s standards, this cannot be called responsible or thoughtful legislating.

Ablechild, a parent organization fighting for informed consent rights as they pertain to psychiatric diagnosing and psychiatric drugs, is intimately aware of the difficulties surrounding the gathering of information about Adam Lanza’s mental health records.

Despite Ablechild filing a FOIA to obtain Lanza’s mental health, toxicology and autopsy records, the state refused to publically release this information when Assistant State Attorney, Patrick Kwanashie, stated disclosure of Adam Lanza’s records “can cause a lot of people to stop taking their medications.”

These records may have provided some insight into Lanza’s actions. But to this day, despite a lengthy and costly investigation, no information about Lanza’s mental health for the five years leading up to the incident has been made publically available. Frankly, there is no information publically available that Lanza did, or did not, receive mental health services in the five years leading up to the incident.   These facts did not stop poorly thought out legislative measures from being rammed down the throats of the citizens of Connecticut.

This is just one example of the problems surrounding this incident. Anyone who read the 6700-page investigation knows there are many more. But, beyond all of this, the issue remains the right to publically discuss any, and all, issues surrounding the official version of events at Sandy Hook regardless of whose feelings may be hurt.

No, Editor Smith, you do not get to decide whose voice is worthy. You do not get to judge whose First Amendment rights are more important.  You may not like the voices you hear, or how they are used. They may be distasteful and hurtful, but every American has a right to that voice. It’s quite possible that Professor Tracy finds your opinion hurtful, and he may even think that you are writing it to purposefully harass him, but even he would have to agree that you are entitled to your damning words.

 

 

AbleChild Responds to Governor Malloy’s Clown Car Comment on Sandy Hook Legislation

January 6th, 2016 | Press Releases

“How many people can get out of a clown car at the same time?” Malloy asked. Dear Governor these are serious times with serious policy implications.

AbleChild working on behalf of the public made every attempt to be included in the legislative process in the aftermath of the murders in Newtown, Connecticut our access to this process was repeatedly denied.

Governor Malloy appointed a Sandy Hook Advisory Commission (SHAC) to review and make policy recommendations. These meetings were not open to the public and our submitted testimony on increased informed consent for the mental health consumer and implementation of the MEDWATCH program, the FDA consumer adverse drug reporting system, was never considered upon repeated submission.

AbleChild followed legislative protocol on every level. Senator Bye’s office refused our recommendations outright and our testimony was lost and was excluded from the public record until a general law committee clerk helped us restore it onto the public record.

The State’s police report illustrated the fact that Nancy Lanza attempted to report an adverse drug event from Celexa (citalopram) an antidepressant in the group of drugs called selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs) to Yale Child Study Center where her son was provided “mental health treatment.”

According to the State’s police report, Yale Child Study Center failed to advise Nancy Lanza to report the adverse event to the FDA MEDWATCH reporting system, instead labeled Nancy Lanza as non-compliant. AbleChild wants to change this conversation for the consumer.

The Sandy Hook advisory panel was comprised of “stakeholders” according to the Governor. The public was not considered “stakeholders” despite the fact the system is funded by taxpayers. However, Adam’s mental health providers, Danbury Hospital and Yale Child Study Center, were participants.

The commission’s recommendations were to increase forced mental health “treatments” just shy of forced medication.

The legislative circus continued as the public watched elected officials travel to the remote town of Sandy Hook to hold a televised closed legislative session for Sandy Hook residences only. A lottery system was implemented for entrance and the qualifier, Sandy Hook, Newtown residences only. The circus needs to be shutdown.

Mental Health First Aid, A $20 Million Price Tag for Compassion

December 2nd, 2015 | Press Releases

What are the odds Gary Scheppke, a member of the Marin County Board of Mental Health, would happen to be on the Golden Gate Bridge with his newly obtained “mental health first aid” certificate in hand to stop a person from jumping? According to the San Jose Mercury News the odds were pretty good, as explained in its article: A surge in federal funding for Mental Health First Aid could make it as popular as CPR.

Getting beyond the bizarre bridge encounter and Scheppke’s relationship with the Marin County Board of Mental Health, let’s take a look at the comparison the article draws to CPR and Mental Health First Aid and then the $20 million federally funded “certificate.”

According to the Mayo Clinic, “Cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) is a lifesaving technique useful in many emergencies, including heart attack or near drowning, in which someone’s breathing or heartbeat has stopped. The American Heart Association recommends that everyone — untrained bystanders and medical personnel alike — begin CPR with chest compressions.”

The Mayo Staff continues, “It’s far better to do something than to do nothing at all if you’re fearful that your knowledge or abilities aren’t 100 percent complete. Remember, the difference between your doing something and doing nothing could be someone’s life.”

The Mental Health First Aid eight-hour course reportedly provides skills to individuals on how to identify symptoms of mental illness, such as depression and how and when to intervene. According to Discovery’s executive director, Kathy Chierton, the course provides interactive and role-playing exercises that help participants empathize with people with mental disorders, “Often, says Chierton, “it can take a decade from when the first symptoms of mental illness show up to when people receive treatment, so early intervention is crucial.”

Let’s remember, though, that there is no objective test for diagnosing any alleged mental disorder – no X-ray, blood work, CAT scan. The diagnosis is completely subjective, based on a set of criteria voted into existence by the American Psychiatric Association (APA). According to the former head of the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH), Thomas Insel, the problem with diagnosing mental illness, “it lacks validity.”

Despite the fact that psychiatric diagnosing is based in neither science or medicine, millions of dollars continue to funnel into mental health services, which largely consists of prescribing dangerous mind-altering drugs – often causing the very behaviors they allegedly “treat.”

For example, the Sandy Hook Elementary school shooting in Newtown, Connecticut, in which a mentally disturbed young man, Adam Lanza, killed 20 children and six adults was the rallying cry for President Obama to sign an executive order providing $20 million in federal funds for the Mental Health First Aid program.

However, according to the Connecticut state police investigation and the Connecticut Child Advocate’s “story” on Adam Lanza, from a very young age, Lanza received the best mental health money could buy. In fact according to the Hartford Courant report, the psychiatry department at Danbury Hospital performed mental health screening on Lanza and released him, concluding he was not a harm to himself or others. This is a clear indication that mental health screenings (diagnosing) are completely unreliable and, as NIMH Insel said, “lacks validity.”

It isn’t very often that someone can say they talked a person out of jumping off the Golden Gate Bridge but, according to San Jose Mercury News, Gary Scheppke, now that he has received the mental health first aid certificate, can identify mental illness when he sees it and act accordingly? Wow, that’s some miraculous training. Or, is it really just a case of one human being showing compassion to another. This compassion, though, comes with a $20 million price tag.

Page 1 of 2412345...1020...Last »
Website Design by Chroma Sites