Friday, September 25, 2020

Beyond the Hysteria, What “13 Reasons Why” Gets Right

From Medium: "13 Reasons Why," the most-watched series in Netflix history, raises many important real-life concerns that need to be addressed, such as the impact...

How Neoliberalism is Damaging Your Mental Health

From The Conversation: Neoliberal policies and conditions may be at least partly responsible for the growing mental health crisis and decline in collective well-being in...

The Elephant in the Room

From Discursive of Tunbridge Wells: Psychologist Rufus May speaks about the often overlooked role of racism in the mental health system. People of color are...

Testifying in Vermont: Forced Drugs

Vermont Governor Shumlin recently suggested a change to state law that would accelerate the process under which a person could be forced to take antipsychotic drugs against her will. The House Human Services Committee reviewed this proposal and I was asked to testify. What follows are my comments.

FBI Raids Lab That Pays Doctors to Promote Genetic Tests

From STAT: Federal investigators recently searched Proove Biosciences, a genetic testing company that purports to determine an individual's likelihood of becoming addicted to opioids. Proove's genetic...

“21st Century Cures Bill Would Weaken Requirements for Disclosing Industry Ties”

Ed Silverman reports for STAT that a provision tucked into the 21st Century Cares legislation exempts companies from reporting payments made to doctors, journals,...

Some Thoughts on Insanity Defense

I am not comfortable with an all-or-nothing insanity defense that is both legally and socially stigmatizing because it sets the person apart as someone who is legally determined to be incapable of being treated as a moral agent. This stigma spills over onto all people who are psychiatrized, and it is part of the conception of madness that also ends up serving as a justification for civil commitment, since we are perceived (incorrectly) as outside the reach of ordinary law.

Police Not Told of Sexual Assault Reports by Mental Patients

From The Age: According to a new report, sexual assault claims by mental health patients are not being reported to the police or even the...

“Justina Pelletier’s Case: Sure, Parents Can Make Their Kids Sick”

Psychiatrist Keith Ablow of Fox News writes "That’s why Boston’s Children’s Hospital, in making a play to take over the life of Justina Pelletier,...

KMSP-TV Investigative Report on Psychiatric Research Abuse at the University of Minnesota

For a scathing, 11-minute overview of the death of Dan Markingson at the University of Minnesota, and new allegations of coercion into psychiatric clinical trials, you can't do much better than this excellent investigative report by Jeff Baillon.

The Female Subject in Psychiatry From Pathology to Prozac

In this piece for The New Inquiry, Sophie Putka chronicles the mental health profession's long history of pathologizing, diagnosing, and medicating women's emotions. "With Freud’s claims...

Christmas Songs Played on a Loop Can be Bad for Mental Health

From Providr: Many retail stores have already begun rolling out Christmas decorations and playing Christmas music. A clinical psychologist recently warned that playing Christmas music...

Correction: No “Charges” Against Former FDA Commissioner Margaret Hamburg

Our headline on an Around the Web item posted on June 8 stating that the former head of the FDA, Margaret Hamburg, had been "charged"...

The Mental Health Reform Act of 2016 (SB 2680) Would Be a Huge Step...

There is indeed a crisis in the mental health business. The crisis derives from psychiatry's spurious and self-serving premise that all significant problems of thinking, feeling, and/or behaving are brain illnesses that are correctable by psychiatric drugs.

Voluntary Psychiatric Patients May Face Exploitation

From WFAA: Many patients who check themselves into psychiatric hospitals voluntarily may have difficulty when attempting to check out. In one recent incident in Denton,...

“Fears That Antipsychotic Drugs Being Used as ‘Chemical Cosh’ in Disability Care”

An editorial in the Guardian discusses the fact that the number of people with intellectual or learning disabilities “who are being treated with psychotropic drugs far exceeds those with mental illness.” The authors of a new study examining the overuse of psychotropic drugs on people with learning disabilities, published this month in BMJ, argue: “If people without mental illness are given psychotropic drugs… it is probably to control their behavior.”

“Forced Treatment is not the way: Opposing View”

Psychiatrist Dan Fisher's "opposing view" in USA Today makes the case — from a mental health perspective — against repealing the Affordable Care Act, which has...

The Helping Room

Every culture has its share of individuals who break down in bewilderment. People who hallucinate, behave beyond norms, seek to die, think in strange ways.

The Great Turning

When I first heard of the proposed “Helping Families in Mental Health Crisis Act of 2013” (H.R. 3717)”, I felt relieved and thought “maybe somebody has finally got it!” However, as I read and processed the words I realized just how much Tim Murphy didn’t get it. Is this mental health system broke? Yes it is. Can it be fixed? Yes it can. But we must do it collectively and with the experience and voices of those with true lived experiences including their families and allies. I stand with millions of others who have shown through our resiliency that our movement is real, has saved lives and most of all we have people that can give voice to what really needs to be changed within the system. If only people will listen.

Vermont Probes Whether Drug Makers Violated its Gift Ban

From STAT: The Vermont attorney general is currently investigating whether drug and medical device companies may have violated state law by giving gifts or payments to health...

Whistleblowers at Research Institutions Fear Retaliation

From The Washington Post: A new investigative report on deterrents in reporting problems with human research found evidence of fear of retaliation among whistleblowers in...

A Daughter’s Call for Safety and Sanity in Mental Health

My mother was once a bright, creative, beautiful young woman, a promising artist and a poet, who was captivated by the hippie movement. She was a creative bohemian artist, defying the conventions of our middle-class Jewish Midwestern family, which had carried a tradition of holding emotions inside and acting stoic. One day, soon after my grandparents’ divorce, she left. She hitched a ride to California, and from that point on, was never the same. The police picked her up on a park bench in Arizona, and she was committed for the first time at age 18. She rotated in and out of mental hospitals, the streets, and jail until her death.

All Charges Dropped Against Mom Who Refused to Allow Her Daughter to Be Taken,...

When police came to enforce a 2011 court order to remove her 13-year-old daughter Arianna, and medicate her, Maryann Golboldo stood her ground -...

Compelled Disclosure of Campus Sexual Assault May Be Harmful for Survivors

The majority of universities require most or all employees to report disclosures of sexual assault, but these policies may be ineffective at addressing campus sexual violence and disempowering for survivors

Reporter was Locked in Mental Hospital for 10 Days

This piece from Newsner chronicles the life and work of Elizabeth Cochran Seaman, a journalist who went undercover to expose the conditions at an infamous mental...

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