Antidepressant Adviser to UK Gov’t Quits After Conflict of Interest Row

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From The BMJ: “[David] Baldwin was the Royal College of Psychiatrists’ representative on [Public Health England’s expert panel on prescribed medicines], which was set up to review the potential effects of withdrawing from prescribed drugs. But he was criticised after he co-wrote a letter to the Times in February that downplayed the side effects of coming off antidepressants. The letter, coauthored with Wendy Burn, president of the Royal College of Psychiatrists, read, ‘In the vast majority of patients, any unpleasant symptoms experienced on discontinuing antidepressants have resolved within two weeks of stopping treatment.’

After the letter was published, 10 psychiatrists and the psychologist John Read of the University of East London, also a member of the expert panel, complained to the college. They said that the letter was incorrect, misleading to patients, and brought the profession into disrepute. In a subsequent letter sent in August the psychiatrist Sami Timimi and 29 other experts in mental health urged the college to replace Baldwin on the group ‘with an RCPsych member who is not compromised by conflicts of interest with the pharmaceutical industry.'”

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1 COMMENT

  1. It must be pointed out that Baldwin quit because he was “harassed online”, and got some professional push-back and rebuttal to his provably false views. Baldwin’s claims of the safety, efficacy, and ease of withdrawal from so-called “anti-depressants” are NOT supported by either a careful scrutiny of the research, or the TRUTH of many 1,000’s of psych drug victims. But NOWHERE does Baldwin even attempt to defend the PhRMA-backed opinions in his ridiculous letter….