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.

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.

 

 

 

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.

CT Parents’ Right Coalition to Discuss Opposition to Sandy Hook Advisory Commission’s Findings on Upcoming Radio Broadcast

July 16th, 2015 | Press Releases

Connecticut Parents’ Right Coalition (CPRC) members will discuss Sandy Hook Advisory Commission (SHAC) final report and questions surrounding the findings and their opposition to the recommendations.

(CPRC) was formed in response to legislation passed under “emergency rule” without public hearings in the aftermath of the Sandy Hook mass murder.

The (CPRC) Coalition includes 40,000 Connecticut parents and more than a dozen non-profit organizations.

Sheila Matthews of AbleChild will join Deborah Stevenson, a constitutional and education attorney and fellow member of the (CPRC) on the upcoming broadcast. Stevenson also spent ten years as a reporter and has appeared on several radio programs. In a recent interview, Stevenson described the goal of the (SHAC) recommendations to serve as a national model as ‘disturbing.’

This Saturday, July 18th at 5:30 PM Eastern Time on the Republic Broadcasting Network (RBN), Matthews and Stevenson will join Deana Spingola of Spingola Speaks.   The radio talk show focuses on current events, history, warfare, health issues, and other relevant topics.

Spingola is the author of “Screening Sandy Hook.” The book examines the role of psychiatric drugs in the school shooting incident and multiple other issues and theories.

 

$400 Million in New Mental Health Services, But Still No Accountability

January 29th, 2015 | Breaking News

The full-court press is on for increasing mental health services for children in the state, with a price tag of $400 million, so far. Given that there is zero science to support any psychiatric diagnosis being an actual brain abnormality, one can only surmise that mental illness will skyrocket and the $400 million is a drop in the bucket of the actual costs.  This time around will there be any real accountability?

As has become the norm, the Sandy Hook shooting incident is invoked in order to justify the massive increases, despite the public having no documentation to support that Adam Lanza was not receiving, or that he even needed, mental health treatment in the five years leading up to the shooting. To date, no documentation has been made public that would suggest Lanza was, or was not, receiving mental health treatment beyond the brief and unsuccessful stint at the Yale Child Study Center in 2007.

To assume that the children of Connecticut need increased mental health treatment and services, because of what occurred at Sandy Hook, simply is not supported by factual documentation. In fact, because no information about Lanza’s mental health, after 2007, has been made public, why isn’t it just as likely to assume he was receiving the best mental health services money could buy?

More interesting, though, is the fact that the enormous increase in mental health spending does little, to nothing, to provide any accountability of where and how the money will be spent. As far as AbleChild is aware, there is no legislative language that will make any data readily available to taxpayers interested in following the hefty mental health expenditures.

Is it of interest to the taxpayers whether there is a large increase in the number of children being diagnosed with a subjective psychiatric diagnosis? Is it of interest how many of the children newly diagnosed are then prescribed dangerous, even deadly, psychiatric drugs as “treatment?” Furthermore, without some kind of data collection system, how will the state actually know if the funding is going toward the intended purpose?

The state is not known for its willingness to make important information publically available, as is evident in the clamp-down on any specific mental health data relating to Sandy Hook shooter, Adam Lanza. Even when language is written into legislation, mandating data be publically accessible, there is no follow-through.

For example, Public Act 06-196* became effective in June of 2006. The Act mandated that the Department of Children and Families shall, within available resources and with the assistance of the University of Connecticut Health Center:

  • Establish guidelines for the use and management of psychotropic medications with children and youths in the care of the Department of Children and Families.
  • Establish and maintain a database to track the use of psychotropic medications with children and youths committed to the care of the Department of Children and Families.

To date, AbleChild is unaware of any database that would readily provide the information subject to the Act. Why? The public should not have to spend hours, or days, hunting through every state agency to obtain this important information… or whether the database even exists. And this Act has been around for nearly a decade.

Based on what clearly is a failure on the part of state agencies to track this information, what makes taxpayers believe there will be a “better” accounting of the $400 million allocated for new mental health services?

After all, by anyone’s measure, $400 million is a lot of money. Certainly the public deserves some accounting of how the money is spent. Along with all the hype associated with the new mental health services programs, will lawmakers act responsibly and institute a program that will actually track the numbers of children being diagnosed and drugged? And, more importantly, will that information be made publically available on a yearly basis?

Don’t count on it. The state is great at telling the taxpayer what mental health services are needed, but it has a pathetic track record when it comes to accounting for the hundreds-of-millions spent on mental health services.

* Public Act 04-238

An Act Concerning Child Poverty and the Use of Psychotropic Medications with Children and Youth in State Care

Sec. 17a-21a. Guidelines for use and management of psychotropic medications. Database established. The Department of Children and Families shall, within available resources and with the assistance of The University of Connecticut Health Center, (1) establish guidelines for the use and management of psychotropic medications with children and youths in the care of the Department of Children and Families, and (2) establish and maintain a database to track the use of psychotropic medications with children and youths committed to the care of the Department of Children and Families.

(P.A. 04-238, S. 2; P.A. 06-196, S. 112.)

History: P.A. 06-196 made technical changes, effective June 7, 2006.

 

 

 

 

What’s Really Behind the Increased Violence in Connecticut?

January 12th, 2015 | Breaking News

Look at Psychiatric Drugs, Not Subjective Mental Illness Labels.

AbleChild is fascinated by the “logic” behind New Canaan Police Department’s recent flip-flop regarding firearm permits based on mental health records.

The entire debacle initially was sold as a public safety issue with New Canaan Police Chief Leon Krolikowski arguing that there was grave concern about “gun violence that has occurred in our state as a direct result of individuals that are mentally ill possessing firearms.” Krolikowski reported that he did not have access to the Department of Health & Addiction Services database and, therefore, could not issue temporary state permits.

Within a day of that announcement, Krolikowski reversed his stand when he reported that, unbeknownst to him, police actually do have access to an applicant’s mental health history through the state police department.

What is of interest, though, is Krolikowski’s remarks about the gun violence that has occurred in the state as a result of the mentally ill possessing firearms. Krolikowski did not provide specific information about the number of mentally ill possessing firearms or, for that matter, what mental illnesses were involved.

Is Krolikowski referring to the Sandy Hook Shooting and Adam Lanza? If so, no permits for the firearms used at the Sandy Hook shooting were issued to Adam Lanza. Additionally, neither of Adam Lanza’s mental health issues would have precluded him from obtaining a firearm permit. Adding insult to injury, the State of Connecticut has refused to make public Lanza’s mental health records. Worse still, Lanza’s psychiatrist, Dr. Paul Fox, destroyed his records without any repercussion. Simply put, there is no way for law enforcement (or anyone) to know whether Lanza had some unknown mental illness that would have precluded his obtaining a permit.

While AbleChild supports any effort to protect public safety, it seems there are other actions that could be taken by Connecticut’s law enforcement personnel that may prove more effective in understanding what actually may be behind the increased violence in the state. For example, rather than collect information about an applicant’s mental illness label, law enforcement may find it more advantageous to collect data about the “treatment” being prescribed.

There is overwhelming evidence that psychiatric drugs, prescribed to “treat” mental illness, cause violent behavior. In fact there are twenty-two international drug regulatory warnings that cite psychiatric drugs causing violent behavior, including mania, hostility, violence, aggression and homicidal/suicidal ideation.

Between 2004 and 2012, there were nearly 15,000 reports to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration’s (FDA) MedWatch system on psychiatric drugs causing violent side effects, including more than fifteen hundred cases of homicidal ideation/homicide, 3,287 cases of mania and more than eight thousand cases of aggression.

Furthermore, according to a 2011 study from the Institute for Safe Medication Practices, published in the journal PloS One, and based on data provided by the FDA’s MedWatch Adverse Event Reporting System, 31 drugs were linked to reports of violent behavior. Nine of these were psychiatric drugs prescribed to “treat” mental illness, including the antidepressants prestig, Effexor, Luvox, Strattera, Paxil, Prozac and Chantix; Amphetamines used to treat ADHD; and the benzodiazepine, Halcion.

As the mental health industry most often prescribes psychiatric drugs for the “big four” “mental disorders,” which include depression, ADHD, bi-polar and schizophrenia, it would appear that having information about what is being prescribed is far more important than the psychiatric label.

Many states in the nation collect psychiatric drug data upon arrest and, if transferred to the county jail, processing must include this data, as the suspect will be provided the medication while awaiting trial. This data would provide a larger picture of those who are committing violent crime while being treated with a psychiatric drug and also would provide detail about which drugs are most implicated.

Denying Constitutional rights based on subjective psychiatric labels, which are not based in medicine or science, does little to protect public safety. One need only look at recent actions taken by the Russian government to restrict those with “gender identity disorders, disorders of sexual preference and psychological and behavioral disorders associated with sexual development and orientation” from driving in the country to see that restricting basic rights based on subjective psychiatric labeling is a slippery slope.

In the case of Connecticut, today, restrictions are imposed on those who have been labeled with a subjective mental illness and voluntarily or involuntarily committed. The question is whose rights will be restricted tomorrow?   If law enforcement is really interested in what is causing the increase in violent crime, Ablechild believes that information can easily be obtained by looking at psychiatric drugs taken by those committing the crimes.

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