Betreff: The Shrinks' Reckless prescribing of Antipsychotic Drugs for Children

Von: Ben Merhav

Datum: Wed, 1 Aug 2007 18:47:47 +1000 (EST) 

Posted by: Lynn Michaels of
Mon Jul 30, 2007 9:10 am (PST)

The Shrinks' Reckless Prescribing of Antipsychotic Drugs for Children

by ALLIANCE FOR HUMAN RESEARCH PROTECTION (AHRP) Promoting Openness, Full Disclosure, and Accountability and

The St. Petersberg Times (Florida) has put the spotlight on the reckless prescribing of antipsychotic drugs for children."In the past seven years, the number of Florida children prescribed suchdrugs has increased some 250 percent. Last year, more than 18,000 state kidson Medicaid were given prescriptions for antipsychotic drugs.Even children as young as 3 years old. Last year, 1,100 Medicaid childre nunder 6 were prescribed antipsychotics, a practice so risky that stateregulators say it should be used only in extreme cases. These numbers are just for children on fee-for-service Medicaid, generally the poor anddisabled. Thousands more kids on private insurance are also on antipsychotics. "

The St. Pete Times correctly reports that the so-called atypicals were developed to treat schizophrenia and bipolar disorder in adults with almost no research on the long-term effects of such powerful medications on the developing brains of children. Initially billed as wonder drugs with few significant side effects, evidence is mounting that they can cause rapid weight gain, diabetes, even death.Indeed, the more that researchers learn, the less comfortable many are becoming with atypicals. However, doctors under the influence of pharmaceutical company propaganda and financial "incentives" to prescribe these drugs, are putting children's lives at risk by prescribing these highly toxic drugs. How else can anyone explain, much less justify with scientific or clinical evidence, the prescribing of 16 psychotropic drugs for 12-year old Joanne Mills' son--all at the same time?

Dr. Ronald Brown who last year headed an American PsychologicalAssociation committee that evaluated the issue, put it succinctly:"The bottom line is that the use of psychiatric medications far exceeds the evidence of safety and effectiveness. What people need to do is what's in the best interest of children instead of what's in the best interest of people's pocketbooks. But children don't vote."

Shame on a society that blindly follows the dictates of financially compromised medical professionals. Shame on a society that allows its children's best interest to be underminedby industry-influenced government policies. Parents are being misled by those who stand to gain from increased sale anduse of antipsychotics. The collaborative partnership between the pharmaceutical industry, mentalhealth providers, and public health policy officials has resulted intransforming children into a captive market. Children's health, safety, andfuture are being sacrificed on the altar of profits 'uber alles.'

Contact: Vera Hassner Sharav 212-595-8974

(Emphasis by Justice Lover)