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PsychRights Joins Scientific Panel's Call For Investigation of Psychiatric Organization's Mass Deception



December 16, 2003

Yesterday a panel of eminent scientists called on Congress to investigate the American Psychiatric Association (APA) and its powerful allies, the pharmaceutical industry, regarding the continuing practice of improper "diagnosis and treatment of mental disorders" based on financial incentives rather than the best interest of the patients. 

These scientists, which include the former Chief of Schizophrenia Research at the National Institute of Mental Health, other psychiatrists and psychologists, concluded that the APA continues to advocate use of ineffective drugs to treat serious mental illness when the larger body of scientific knowledge proves there is no evidence to support such treatment.  Due to the large amount of money contributed to the APA and its members by the pharmaceutical industry, however, the APA has refused to change its outdated practices.  See, 

The Scientific Panel ended by charging the APA with being the handmaiden of the pharmaceutical industry:

In sum, the APA's statements reflect less the "pace of science" than the pace of commerce: they blur with the pharmaceutical advertising themes saturating our media. This is because the APA is not an independent organization. One third of its operating budget comes from the drug industry. Drug companies dominate its professional meetings to advertise drugs. In addition, the drug industry funds, directs, and analyzes many drug studies (Healy, 2003), and psychiatric journals publish so-called scientific reports of these drug studies that are ghost-written by industry employees or marketing firms. Psychiatric drug experts with no significant ties to industry can hardly be found. Industry largesse binds many psychiatric practitioners to the industry (Editorial, 2002).

Jim Gottstein, VP/COO of the Law Project for Psychiatric Rights (PsychRights) said, "this is a classic example of medical professionals allowing the promise of easy money to interfere with good medical practices."  Mr. Gottstein continued by saying, "If the media investigated the APA and its financial ties to the pharmaceutical industry there is no question but that it would find the best interests of patients taking a back seat to greed." 

Don Roberts, the President of PsychRights, added "The tragedy of all of this is that current psychiatric treatments are making people worse, not better.  The Law Project for Psychiatric Rights joins in the Scientific Panel's call for an investigation into this dishonesty."

The Law Project for Psychiatric Rights is a non-profit, public interest law firm dedicating to attacking unwarranted court ordered psychiatric drugging by exposing the faulty science that underlies the practice.  See, #   #   #