Thursday, May 13, 2021

MIA Reports

In-depth reporting on psychiatry and its impact on society.

The Charade of New Drug Approvals for Schizophrenia

The FDA recently approved lumateperone for schizophrenia. A review of the clinical trials reveals a testing process that is fatally flawed, and a new drug coming to market that doesn't provide a clinically meaningful benefit.
digital antipsychotic

The Rise of the Digital Asylum

The digital pill Abilify MyCite, which is now being introduced into the market, foretells of a future where such technology is used to monitor the behavior, location and "medication compliance" of a person 24 hours a day.

Psychiatry and the Selves We Might Become: An Interview with Sociologist Nikolas Rose

MIA’s Ayurdhi Dhar interviews the well-known sociologist of medicine, Nikolas Rose, about the role psychiatry plays in shaping how we manage ourselves and our world.

Learning a Different Way: An Interview with Maori Psychiatrist Diana Kopua

MIA’s Ayurdhi Dhar interviews Diana Kopua about the Mahi a Atua approach, the global mental health movement, and the importance of language and narratives in how we understand our world and ease our suffering.

Where Critical Psychiatry Meets Community Resilience

The International Society for Ethical Psychology and Psychiatry had the clout to draw a stellar line-up of presenters to its recent conference, including internationally prominent critics like David Healy, Peter Gøtzsche, Robert Whitaker and Allen Frances. There were lots of learnings and even some tense discussions, but one of the most intriguing aspects of the entire conference was the way in which scientific and social issues became deeply intertwined, especially when presenters reached for better pathways forward.
Kamala Harris

Kamala Harris’s ‘Mental Health’ Plan: Why It Still Matters

Harris’s plan was met with vociferous condemnation from psychiatric survivors, civil libertarians, and disability justice advocates, who vowed to fight it. While Harris has dropped out of the presidential race, the ideas behind her policy proposal have existed for decades, and are likely to endure.

Questioning the Moral Panic Around Teletherapy: An Interview with Hannah Zeavin

MIA's Emaline Friedman interviews Hannah Zeavin about what the history of teletherapy reveals about its limitations and radical potential.

“Reimagining Psychiatry:” An Interview with Peter Stastny

Peter Stastny is a New York-based psychiatrist, documentary filmmaker, and a co-founder of the International Network toward Alternatives and Recovery (INTAR). He has been...
Illustration of the Queer Eye cast

Diving into Your Soul: Lessons from “Queer Eye”

"Queer Eye" has a fresh, therapeutic twist: Installment after installment, it sends the repeated messages: Take care of yourself. Be kind to yourself. You’re beautiful. You’re good. We love you. Love yourself. Or, in the words of Van Ness: Yass, queen!

Suicide in the Age of Prozac

During the past twenty years, the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention and American psychiatry have adopted a "medicalized" approach to preventing suicide, claiming that antidepressants are protective against suicide. Yet, the suicide rate in the United States has increased 30% since 2000, a time of rising usage of antidepressants. A review of studies of the effects of mental health treatment and antidepressants on suicide reveals why this medicalized approach has not only failed, but pushed suicide rates higher.

Jill Nickens – The Akathisia Alliance for Education and Research

This week on the Mad in America podcast we turn our attention to prescription-drug-induced akathisia and joining me to discuss this is Jill Nickens. Jill is the president and founder of the Akathisia Alliance for Education and Research, a nonprofit organization formed by people who have personal experience of akathisia.

Moving Mental Health Work Away from Diagnosis: Sarah Kamens and Peter Kinderman on New...

MIA's Justin Karter interviews two leaders of the Task Force on Diagnostic Alternatives, a group of mental health professionals who have issued an open letter demanding a new look at psychiatric diagnosis.

The Carter Center’s Guide for Mental Health Journalism: Don’t Question, Follow the Script

The Carter Center’s Journalism Resource Guide on Behavioral Health is a manual for docile journalism. There is no encouragement to be skeptical of the powerful in psychiatry. Rather, the guide provides reporters with a template to follow that reifies conventional wisdom, offering a message similar to what the American Psychiatric Association has sounded for years.
Rows and rows of metal markers commemmorating unmarked patient graves.

Narrating Asylum History Through an Anti-Racist Lens: An Interview with Author Mab Segrest

Mab segrest is Professor Emeritus of Gender and Women's Studies at Connecticut College and the author of Administrations of Lunacy: Racism and the Haunting...

Psychology is Not What You Think: An Interview with Critical Psychologist Ian Parker

MIA’s Ayurdhi Dhar interviews Ian Parker about critical psychology, discourse and political action, and whether psychology has anything left to offer.

The Door to a Revolution in Psychiatry Cracks Open

The Ministry of Health in Norway has ordered its four regional health authorities to offer medicine-free treatment in psychiatric hospitals. A six-bed ward in Tromso, which is in the far north of Norway, is now providing such care.

The Surprising Mental Health Benefits of Volunteering

A program offers psychotherapy in exchange for voluntary service in the community. But the act of volunteering itself can have mental health benefits of its own.

DRC Will Challenge California’s Outpatient Committal Laws in Court

Disability Rights California will challenge Los Angeles’ Assisted Outpatient Treatment program in court this fall, DRC attorney Pamela Cohen announced Friday. According to Cohen, California’s AB-1241 or “Laura’s Law” diverts funding from community mental health services and towards police, administrators and courts, doesn’t reach the people it purports to be trying to help, and violates people’s civil rights. “This is an illegal program,” said Cohen.

The Media Scolds Marianne Williamson (And Gets It Wrong)

Journalists have called Marianne Williams’ comments on depression dangerous and irresponsible. A closer look reveals that her “opinions” on mental health treatment are more in line with the science, and that the know-it-all assertions by Cooper and colleagues are belied by it.

Bringing Human Rights to Mental Health Care: An Interview with UN Envoy Dainius Pūras

MIA's Ana Florence interviews United Nations Special Rapporteur Dainius Pūras about his own journey as a psychiatrist and the future of rights-based approaches to mental health.

Addressing the Roots of Racial Trauma: An Interview with Psychologist Lillian Comas-Díaz

MIA’s Hannah Emerson interviews Comas-Díaz on the need for culturally competent care in a medicalized and individualistic society.
VA Secretary Robert Wilkie

An Open Letter to VA Secretary Robert Wilkie: A Plan for Deprescribing Veteran Suicides

Through my research and experiences, I've found that what the Veterans Administration has been doing to fight the veteran suicide epidemic isn't working and appears to be unintentionally exacerbating it. These problems are fixable. But I need your help.
Bernie Sanders

Bernie Sanders’ ‘Revolutionary’ Disability Plan Opposes Expanding Involuntary Treatment

Candidate Bernie Sanders' 'disability rights as civil rights' plan is distinctive in its explicit inclusion of people with psychiatric disabilities and diagnoses, an orientation that runs counter to prevailing policy discourse in the U.S. 
illustration of a voter box in a stormy ocean with a ladder

Voting While “Mentally Ill”: A Legacy of Discrimination

Legal and practical barriers to voting disenfranchise people judged "mentally incompetent." The centuries-old, unclear laws and regulations also disproportionately affect people of color.

Opening Doors in the Borderlands: An Interview with Liberation Psychologist Mary Watkins

MIA’s Micah Ingle interviews Mary Watkins about reorienting psychology toward liberation and social justice.

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