Senate Amendment Filed to Fight Inappropriate Antipsychotics in Nursing Homes

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Senators Chuck Grassley of Iowa, Herb Kohl of Wisconsin and Richard Blumenthal of Connecticut filed an amendment to the Food and Drug Administration Safety and Innovation Act yesterday in the United States Senate, “intended to empower (nursing home) residents and their loved ones in the decisions about the drugs prescribed for them.” The amendment calls for education regarding non-pharmacological interventions along with possible risks and side effects of medication.

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Mad in America hosts blogs by a diverse group of writers. These posts are designed to serve as a public forum for a discussion—broadly speaking—of psychiatry and its treatments. The opinions expressed are the writers’ own.

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Kermit Cole
Kermit Cole, MFT, founding editor of Mad in America, works in Santa Fe, New Mexico as a couples and family therapist. Inspired by Open Dialogue, he works as part of a team and consults with couples and families that have members identified as patients. His work in residential treatment — largely with severely traumatized and/or "psychotic" clients — led to an appreciation of the power and beauty of systemic philosophy and practice, as the alternative to the prevailing focus on individual pathology. A former film-maker, he has undergraduate and master's degrees in psychology from Harvard University, as well as an MFT degree from the Council for Relationships in Philadelphia. He is a doctoral candidate with the Taos Institute and the Free University of Brussels. You can reach him at [email protected]

5 COMMENTS

  1. Unfortunately this amendment will do nothing to help victims of psychiatry get out from under harmful prescriptions of atypical antipsychotics.

    Senator Herb Kohl in the Related Items article: “We need a new policy that helps to ensure that these drugs are being appropriately used to treat people with mental illnesses, not used to curb behavioral symptoms of Alzheimer’s or other dementias,” said Kohl in an announcement publicizing Tuesday’s action.”

  2. The newer generation so called ‘atypical’ antipsychotics have been heavily pushed by the drug companies,on children,veterans for PTSD and the elderly.
    Eli Lilly’s Zyprexa franchise made them $65 billion.Lilly was fined $1.4 billion for Zyprexa fraud.
    -Daniel Haszard FMI zyprexa-victims(dot)com

  3. This drugs should not be given to anyone whether they be residents of nursing homes or people who supposedly have “mental illness.” We have to fight their use no matter who the group is that happens to be the immdeidate group under scrutiny. I worked in a good nursing home; many of them are not fit to take care of your cat or dog, let alone your loved ones. The only reason that antipsychotics are being used in nursing homes at all is to chemically lobotomize the residents so that it’s easeir for the staff. Granted, people with dementia and other organic problems with their brains are not easy to take care of or deal with. However, this does not give anyone the right to numb them and lobotomize them. Even in the good nursing home that I worked in they were using Haldol to shut people up if they got too friesky. I witnessed the drugging of people who were full of vitality and life, people who were vocal when their care was not as good as it should be. They went from being alive and vibrant to people trapped in gerry chairs, staring vacantly into space and drooling on themselves. Many times the family members either didn’t know this was being done or they didn’t know how dangerous the drugs are. And when they came to visit their loved one and found them drooling they were told that it was the progression of their dementia, or obs, or whatever. They were never told the truth. Even when they were warned they were reluctant to stand up and say something about it because they were worried that it would compromise their position and would be told to take their loved one elsewhere. Good nursing homes can be very arrogant in the way that they deal with family members of the residents. These toxic drugs should not be given to anyone and the drug companies chould not be allowed to make them. Why are these dangerous drugs not taken off of the market when drugs like Viox were taken off? We all know the answer to this question. It’s because they are “psychiatric” drugs.

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