What Would Real Informed Consent Look Like on Psychiatric Drugs?

A Panel of People With Lived Experience Speak Out


Mad in America Continuing Education completed the latest series of webinars on June 18 on a key ethical issue in psychiatry, “What Would Real Informed Consent Look Like on Psychiatric Drugs.” This 6 session course started and ended with a panel of people who have themselves experienced being prescribed these drugs. They have also worked in programs where they have observed the process.

The last webinar saw each of the panelists (Celia Brown, Malcolm Aquinas, Sean Syrek with Ron Unger as moderator) share their observations about the 4 sessions which followed their initial panel review in January 2019. They also each summed up their thinking about how informed consent has generally been practiced.

We want to make this last session available to as many people as possible because it was a powerful discussion. There was a strong sense that the process is done poorly and without much regard for the person being prescribed the medicationā€”the term “anosognosia” was frequently mentioned. At the same time, there was consideration of the human dynamics that lead to prescribers to doing the marginal job that is unfortunately the norm.

I would encourage making this panel’s discussion available to as many individuals and programs as possible. If I could wave a magic wand, I would have it in the hands of every professional and peer who work anywhere near the prescribing of psychiatric medications. If they would like access to the entire course, it is online and does offer CEs for the 4 intervening sessions for the same $75 registration fee with consideration for reduced rates for organizations and some limited scholarships for others who would otherwise not be able to afford the fee. You can click here for more information.

Please be in touch with me if you have questions at [email protected]

(NOTE: This session did not offer continuing education credits because I wanted the discussion to be free flowing and not be restricted by the constraints of the CE application process. Those who paid a registration fee for the 4 sessions between February and May would not have been able to claim credits so we feel it is fair to make this last one available for no fee.)

-Bob Nikkel

Below is the webinar recording.