http://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/mad-in-america/201010/samhsa-the-alternatives-conference-and-the-story-opportunity-lost

SAMHSA, the Alternatives Conference, and the Story of an Opportunity Lost

The Medication Taboo in the Land of Free Speech Published on October 6, 2010

In the last chapter of my book Anatomy of an Epidemic, I noted that if our society is going to stem the epidemic of disabling mental illness that has erupted during the past twenty years, then it needs to have an honest discussion about what is truly known about the biological causes of psychiatric disorders, and an honest discussion about how the medications affect the long-term course of those disorders. The illuminating powers of science could work their usual magic. But that is a discussion that many in our society don't want to have, and my recent experience at the Alternatives conference in Anaheim illustrates that point, and reveals too why this is such a loss. The Background to the "Controversy"

In Anatomy of an Epidemic, I basically followed a tried-and-true journalistic path. I followed the evidence. I looked at how the chemical imbalance theory of mental disorders arose, how it was investigated, and how it never panned out. As Kenneth Kendler, coeditor in chief of Psychological Medicine wrote in 2005, "We have hunted for big simple neurochemical explanations for psychiatric disorders and have not found them." Then I investigated how psychiatric medications affect the long-term course of four major mental disorders (schizophrenia, anxiety, depression, and bipolar illness), and that involves doing an exhaustive survey of studies conducted (or funded) by the National Institute of Mental Health, the World Health Organization, and foreign governments for the past 50 years.

 

Now, when you do that, you discover a story of science quite at odds with our societal belief that psychiatric medications fix chemical imbalances in the brain and that they have dramatically improved long-term outcomes. And when you write up this history of science, as I did in Anatomy of an Epidemic, you do become unpopular in certain circles. In July, the National Empowerment Center, which is a peer-run advocacy organization, invited me to be a keynote speaker at the Alternatives Conference. The National Empowerment Center is funded by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA), and SAMHSA, I was told, had signed off on having me speak. However, once the National Empowerment Center announced that I would be speaking at the conference, SAMHSA quickly rescinded the invitation. In response, MindFreedom, which is an activist group, organized a protest via the Internet, asking people to contact both SAMSHA and the White House, and within 36 hours, I had been publicly re-invited to speak.

What people following this "controversy" didn't know was that my re-invitation came with considerable strings attached. I had originally been scheduled to give a workshop in addition to a keynote, but the workshop was still cancelled. (I had planned to speak about a Finnish program for treating psychotic patients that was producing excellent results, and the prescribing of exercise as a treatment for depression, which is now being done in Britain.) The other condition was this: The National Empowerment Center was required to recruit a psychiatrist, from a list of names provided by SAMHSA, to "rebut" my keynote. And I would not be given an opportunity to respond to that rebuttal.

Now, if SAMSHA had wanted to organize a debate following my talk, that would have been terrific. But this was a setup that SAMHSA seemed to have torn from the pages of a 25-year old Soviet Union handbook: invite dissident speaker and then denounce him! Normally, I wouldn't have accepted such an arrangement, but I had been quite moved and humbled by the protest that had led to my "reinvitation," and so I figured, what the heck. It wasn't every day that you got to sit in a ballroom with more than 1,000 people and hear your work denounced.

As the conference approached, a new controversy reared its head. Will Hall, who many years ago was given a diagnosis of "schizoaffective disorder/schizophrenia," and who today works as a therapist (having been off psychiatric medications for 17 years), had planned to give a workshop that included discussing a "harm-reduction" approach to withdrawing from psychiatric medications. Several years ago, Hall had written a book on the subject, which had been published by two advocacy groups, The Freedom Center and the Icarus Project, and given that there are few books written by professionals on the circuit, his had proven to be quite popular. But a few days before the conference began, Hall was told that the printed description of his workshop in the conference brochure had been changed to remove any mention about "coming off drugs." Hall announced that he couldn't accept such censorship, a new protest erupted, and then he was told that the offending words could in fact be mentioned in an updated description that would be added to the conference brochure.

And all this occurred before an alternatives conference.

Friday, October 1

On Friday morning, I was given about 45 minutes to speak, and after I gave a brief overview of Anatomy of an Epidemic, I spoke at greater length about this question: Is it true that people diagnosed with schizophrenia (or other psychotic disorders) need to be on antipsychotic medication all their lives? There is a fairly long line of studies dating back to the 1960s that bear on this question, and the conclusion to be drawn is this: If psychiatry wants to maximize long-term outcomes, it needs to use antipsychotic medications in a selective, limited manner. Time and time again, the studies showed that there is a large subgroup of patients that would fare better if they were never put on the drugs in the first place, or if they were maintained on the drugs for only a short while.

The beauty of this particular story of science is that it concludes with a description of how western Lapland, in northern Finland, started using antipsychotic medications in this manner in 1992, and today their psychotic patients enjoy the best long-term outcomes in the western world. Five years after a first psychotic episode, eighty percent of their patients are either back in school or working. About one-third of the patients have been exposed to antipsychotics during this period, and about twenty percent end up taking the medication regularly. And what I like most about this success story is that it cannot be viewed, in any way, as an "anti-medication" story. It's a "best-practices" story.

Most of the audience understood this to be a "good news" tale, with science telling us of a therapeutic path that led to high recovery rates. And imagine if the program, at this national conference, had been structured to have psychiatrists (or other providers) discuss the talk I had just given. We could have spoken about whether a similar therapeutic approach could ever be tried here, and with representatives from SAMHSA there, perhaps this possibility could even have leapt onto a national agenda. This could have been a moment for transformative change in the treatment of first-episode psychosis in this country, a change designed to put young people back onto a path of real recovery, rather than down a path that led all too often to chronicity and disability. But unfortunately, in that Hyatt Regency ballroom, a much different process was underway. Several SAMHSA officials were nervously huddled with the psychiatrist, Mark Ragins, who had been selected to rebut my talk, apparently with a sense of urgency that he effectively counter what I had said. No good news allowed!

When Dr. Ragins took the stage at lunchtime, he was remarkably candid. He was here because SAMHSA wouldn't let me speak unless a psychiatrist had a chance to rebut what I had said. This, of course, was startling news to most in the audience, as few had ever been to a conference where a second keynote speaker was brought in to discredit the first.

There was, however, no real discussion by Dr. Ragins of the talk I had given, or the issues brought up in Anatomy of an Epidemic. Instead, Dr. Ragins used this metaphor to criticize Anatomy: In the book, he said, I had provided readers with a "compelling picture" of a "close-up of a car accident," but "we have to widen our view to decide if freeways should be torn down." Dr. Ragins then discussed other factors besides medication that might be causing the astonishing rise in the number of disabled mentally ill in our society, such as the fact that once people are on SSI or SSDI, there is a financial disincentive to return to work (which I agree is a factor.) Finally, in apparent reference to the many studies I cited in the book that had found that medicated patients have worse long-term outcomes than the off-medication group, he said:

"Medical interventions are always correlated with worse (long-term) problems . . . It is likely that all interventions ‘done to' someone to give them help or take care of them will have short-term benefits that wane over time and may well become long-term negatives."

I still am not quite sure how that was supposed to be a "rebuttal" to Anatomy of an Epidemic. But that is how it was being pitched, and then when Dr. Ragins detailed some of his thoughts on what promoted long-term recovery -- "Love other people, family, partners, kids" was one of the things he advised -- I could only think: Am I supposed to be against this? Indeed, I had the feeling that if Dr. Ragins and I had been on a panel together, we would have found much common ground, and that he might have thought that there was considerable merit to the Western Lapland approach. But the chance to have that productive discussion had been lost.

A Postscript

During the conference, D. J. Jaffe, who has close ties to the National Alliance on Mental Illness, having served on its national board of directors, wrote a blog about the conference for The Huffington Post, describing it as a waste of taxpayer money. My presence there, he argued, was evidence of why this was so. The keynote speaker, Jaffe said, had written that "antipsychotic drugs do not fix any known brain abnormality nor do they put brain chemistry back into balance," and readers were left to understand that, given that everybody knew that mental disorders were caused by chemical imbalances, I was a bit of a loony-tune.  <Vince's note: D. J. Jaffee is a New York-based ad man. Jaffee was on the board of NAMI-spin-off, the Treatment Advocacy Center, a group  dedicated to promoting forced treatment. Twenty-two states have made changes to their treatment laws in response to these efforts. He wrote a series of OpEds that appeared in many major New York state newspapers in the past year advocating that the states involuntary treatment law (Kendras Law) be made permanent. The state legislature extended this law for another 5 years.>

So what was the real purpose of this blog? NAMI is a powerful political group, heavily funded by pharmaceutical companies, and in my opinion, Jaffe was delivering a warning. He was telling the National Empowerment Center and other consumer groups that they risked losing their funding if they did not, in the future, march in lockstep with psychiatry's official story, which is that mental disorders are known brain illnesses, and that the drugs are like "insulin for diabetes." No more invitation by the National Empowerment Center to speakers who would say otherwise.

At such moments, I have to confess that I begin to lose all hope. It seems quite impossible that our society will ever be able to have a thoughtful, honest discussion about what is truly known about mental disorders, and about the merits of psychiatric medications. The forces lined up against such a discussion are simply too great.

Do you know the psychiatric drugs can kill?

Meet LAP--The Danish (Ex-) Users of Psychiatry

          Special EditionIn This IssueMeet LAP--The Danish (Ex-) Users of PsychiatryDo You Know that Psychiatric Drugs Can Kill?Thanks to Peter Breggin: Denmark Now on the Right TrailLAP Expose': Dead In Psychiatry Poster, CampaignDr. Breggin to do Special Radio Interview with Danish ProtestersEmpathic TherapyEmpathicTherapy.org1-607-272-5328 begin_of_the_skype_highlighting              1-607-272-5328      end_of_the_skype_highlightingCenter for the Study of Empathic TherapyAttention: Ginger Breggin101 East State St #112Ithaca, NY 14850Register NOW! for our Empathic Therapy Conference, April 8-10, 2011Register Here   Dr. Peter Breggin's Center for the Study of Empathic Therapy & Ethical Human Sciences and Services NewsletterSpecial Edition     10/20/2010 - Volume1, Issue 10             Special EditionIn This IssueMeet LAP--The Danish (Ex-) Users of PsychiatryDo You Know that Psychiatric Drugs Can Kill?Thanks to Peter Breggin: Denmark Now on the Right TrailLAP Expose': Dead In Psychiatry Poster, CampaignDr. Breggin to do Special Radio Interview with Danish ProtestersEmpathic TherapyEmpathicTherapy.org1-607-272-5328 begin_of_the_skype_highlighting              1-607-272-5328      end_of_the_skype_highlightingCenter for the Study of Empathic TherapyAttention: Ginger Breggin101 East State St #112Ithaca, NY 14850Register NOW! for our Empathic Therapy Conference, April 8-10, 2011Register Here   Dear Steve,We have received tremendously inspiring reports from the Danish "(Ex-) Users of Psychiatry" movement in the last couple of weeks.  With courage and planning and lots of communication, the anti-psychiatry movement in that small country is exposing the alarming numbers of deaths resulting from exposure to psychiatry.  A great number of young Danish citizens are being disabled and then pensioned due to psychiatric exposure and this issue has also been revealed.  As a result, Danish government officials are actually cutting funding for psychiatry.  The story is brought to us by citizen reporter Elsebeth Halckendorff.  We are devoting this issue to full coverage of the courageous Danish psychiatric reform movement and the impact that their work is having on curtailing psychiatric damage in Denmark.Very best, Ginger Breggin, EditorMeet LAP--the Danish (Ex-)Users of Psychiatry LAP is a national organization, founded in 1999, of Danish (Ex-) Users of Psychiatry.  The LAP website states: “We have some views and opinions concerning the treatment we are exposed to – and these opinions may very well differ from the ones of our relatives or doctors.  We want to get influence on our own lives and treatment.  We want to support each other, make initiatives in common, formulate policies and make demands regarding our own interests. The organization is independent of political, financial, medical and religious interests. For further information please contact us at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.."  Image:The campaign group from Lap in the walking street of Aabenraa, a town in the south of Jutland at the German border. The man in the foreground to the right is the campaign leader Paul-Bjergager Nielsen. Do You Know that Psychiatric Drugs Can Kill?The Danish organisation LAP – with about 2000 members, made 40,000 copies of this postcard and distributed it to coffee shops, restaurants and in the streets of Denmark.  This postcard and posters were distributed for months before the LAP group went on their bus tour protest.The text on the backside reads: “do you know that psychiatric drugs can kill” and mention some of the names of young Danes who received the deadly cocktail.Thanks to Peter Breggin: Denmark Now on the Right Trail by Elsebeth HalckendorffOn October 10th on the International Day of Mental Health a big demonstration was held in the city of Copenhagen, when a campaign bus from Lap returned after a tour around Denmark. Lap is an organisation of present and former users of psychiatry and for two weeks they drove through the country placing white crosses everywhere as a protest against the many dead in psychiatry. The arrangement was made together with another organisation, the very new, “Dead in psychiatry”, for families who lost a beloved one in psychiatry.Paul Bjergager Nielsen, the leader of the campaign, and his group planned the demonstration half a year ago. Beforehand the Lap members put posters in the 13 major cities of Denmark and had 40,000 postcards printed which were distributed to coffee shops and restaurants all over the country and handed out to people in the streets in the major cities of Denmark.  The campaign group received television coverage during their travels, primarily in the western part of Denmark, called Jutland.  A spot can be watched at Danish TV coverage of LAP Protest.In Denmark the conditions of psychiatry are very different from those in the States. This is thanks to the Danish healthcare system, which means the Danes have free healthcare. If a problem was a small one like stress, sorrow or even headaches the easy solution was to hand over the person to psychiatry. For years psychiatry has had free rein in Denmark and nobody asked for evidence of results. On the contrary, psychiatry ran big advertisements in Denmark, telling how good and clever they are, that their drugs did miracles and were “harmless and with almost no side effects.” Nobody questioned these statements.However, many Danes have died from psychiatric treatment, nobody knows how many. Unofficial figures cite  5 – 6 deaths a day, but the Danish National Board of Health states around 3,000 a year or over 8 deaths a day. Even these last figures are very unreliable and probably too low, because the statistic material is insufficient, which is easily proved. Also the psychiatrists have resisted having their victims investigated by forensic doctors, so it has been possible for psychiatry to cover up the causes of death.As we say in Danish, psychiatry freewheeled for years. Nobody demanded anything in return for the 100 billion psychiatry cost the Danish society and taxpayers yearly. People that psychiatry hurt and disabled were put away on a pension that was paid for by the state, as was the healthcare they had received.  Nobody cared about these pensioners because they were labelled by psychiatry as being mentally sick and therefore unreliable, even through the person’s problem from the beginning was an ordinary problem like loosing a lover or another problem that could hit anybody.This means that 10.27% of the Danish population of total 5.534.738 people of which 90,5% are ethnic Danes are on drugs.Psychiatrists were emperors and they ruled in absolutely monarchy, distributing their “harmless” drugs to anybody entering their door. The influence on the brain of these drugs remained a big secret.But thanks to Dr. Peter Breggin and his books, explaining what the drugs do to the brain, the picture has now changed. Several big Danish media outlets have started calling the drugs “brain medicine”, and finally the Danes have started opening their eyes to the side effects and other former secrets of psychiatry.Also the Danish government has opened their eyes to all the pensioners that psychiatrists are creating. According to the Danish Ankestyrelsen, a public organisation taking care of statistics and development, 22 people a day or 7,985 persons a year are put on a social pension because of psychiatric treatment, many of those below the age of 40.On the opening of the parliament on October 12th, 2010 ,  the prime minister of Denmark in his opening speech said that this has to come to an end.  Also the Danish minister of health has shown he has read the work of Breggin. In a recent TV interview he asked where this growing number of mentally sick come from.  In the new government budget, which is right now negotiated, psychiatry is not included. They’ll have to ask for money from a so-called Satspulje, which is a fund. In this fund psychiatry will have to share money with other organisations. Further, mental hospitals are shut down and beds to the growing amount of mental sick Danes are being closed.Forensic doctors are now demanding investigations into the deaths of psychiatric patients. Our military is changing, too, concerning psychiatry.  Before when traumatized Danish soldiers returned from war in Iraq or lately Afghanistan, they were handed over to psychiatry, where they got drugs, making them crazy, which cost some very heartbreaking incidents in Denmark.But today, October 13th, the Danish minister of Health and minister of Defence were on the news, presenting proposals for a new veteran policy, supporting the soldiers in the right way, which does not include psychiatry.So in Denmark Peter Breggin has had a big influence by drawing the attention to the facts about what the drugs can do to the brain.Things have started moving. Denmark is now on the right trail, and sooner or later the whole truth will be revealed…A handful of the campaign group from LAP, driving through Denmark from north to south protesting against the many dead in psychiatry.LAP Expose': Dead In Psychiatry Poster, Campaign This poster telling about th4e LAP campaign ”Dead in psychiatry” was put in 13 major Danish cities, several months before the LAP protest that took place from September 25th to October 10th, 2010.  As a result of the advance preparation through distribution of this poster, the 40,000 postcards, and other communications, Danes, national media and Danish political leaders have been very responsive to the LAP campaign against deaths from psychiatry.The wife of the campaign leader and a LAP group member in front of a Danish mental hospital. The campaign was especially covered in the part of Denmark called Jutland.  The poster is a copy of the front page from the Danish newspaper, Nordjyske, that says: “poisoned by antidepressives”.Dr. Peter Breggin to Interview Danish Protest LeadersJoin Dr. Peter Breggin for his weekly Monday evening radio show.  Elsebeth Halckendorff and Jan Andersen, a leader of the Danish (Ex-) Users of Psychiatry will be Dr. Breggin's special guests on November 22nd, 2010.  Go here to Dr. Breggin's website to connect with his radio show. You can listen to the show, live, via the internet and you can listen to earlier shows with Dr. Breggin that have been archived.  ~ Thanks for reading about the exciting developments and the brave individuals in Denmark who are helping to protect and save lives.Remember to join our Center for the Study of Empathic TherapyVery best regards,Ginger Breggin, Executive DirectorCenter for the Study of Empathic Therapywww.empathictherapy.organd join in our growing efforts to encourage empathic, ethical human services and sciences in our culture.  Peter R. Breggin, MD is no longer affiliated with the Center for the Study of Psychiatry, informally known as International Center for the Study of Psychiatry and Psychology, which he founded and led from 1972-2002,and Dr. Breggin is no longer involved in its conferences.Copyright 2010 Peter R. Breggin, MD       Peter Breggin MD101 East State St, #112Ithaca New York 14850United States You are subscribed to this newsletter as This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. Please click here to modify your message preferences or to unsubscribe from any future mailings. We will respect all unsubscribe requests. Meet LAP--the Danish (Ex-)Users of Psychiatry LAP is a national organization, founded in 1999, of Danish (Ex-) Users of Psychiatry.  The LAP website states: “We have some views and opinions concerning the treatment we are exposed to – and these opinions may very well differ from the ones of our relatives or doctors.  We want to get influence on our own lives and treatment.  We want to support each other, make initiatives in common, formulate policies and make demands regarding our own interests. The organization is independent of political, financial, medical and religious interests. For further information please contact us at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.."  Image:The campaign group from Lap in the walking street of Aabenraa, a town in the south of Jutland at the German border. The man in the foreground to the right is the campaign leader Paul-Bjergager Nielsen. Do You Know that Psychiatric Drugs Can Kill?The Danish organisation LAP – with about 2000 members, made 40,000 copies of this postcard and distributed it to coffee shops, restaurants and in the streets of Denmark.  This postcard and posters were distributed for months before the LAP group went on their bus tour protest.The text on the backside reads: “do you know that psychiatric drugs can kill” and mention some of the names of young Danes who received the deadly cocktail.Thanks to Peter Breggin: Denmark Now on the Right Trail by Elsebeth HalckendorffOn October 10th on the International Day of Mental Health a big demonstration was held in the city of Copenhagen, when a campaign bus from Lap returned after a tour around Denmark. Lap is an organisation of present and former users of psychiatry and for two weeks they drove through the country placing white crosses everywhere as a protest against the many dead in psychiatry. The arrangement was made together with another organisation, the very new, “Dead in psychiatry”, for families who lost a beloved one in psychiatry.Paul Bjergager Nielsen, the leader of the campaign, and his group planned the demonstration half a year ago. Beforehand the Lap members put posters in the 13 major cities of Denmark and had 40,000 postcards printed which were distributed to coffee shops and restaurants all over the country and handed out to people in the streets in the major cities of Denmark.  The campaign group received television coverage during their travels, primarily in the western part of Denmark, called Jutland.  A spot can be watched at Danish TV coverage of LAP Protest.In Denmark the conditions of psychiatry are very different from those in the States. This is thanks to the Danish healthcare system, which means the Danes have free healthcare. If a problem was a small one like stress, sorrow or even headaches the easy solution was to hand over the person to psychiatry. For years psychiatry has had free rein in Denmark and nobody asked for evidence of results. On the contrary, psychiatry ran big advertisements in Denmark, telling how good and clever they are, that their drugs did miracles and were “harmless and with almost no side effects.” Nobody questioned these statements.However, many Danes have died from psychiatric treatment, nobody knows how many. Unofficial figures cite  5 – 6 deaths a day, but the Danish National Board of Health states around 3,000 a year or over 8 deaths a day. Even these last figures are very unreliable and probably too low, because the statistic material is insufficient, which is easily proved. Also the psychiatrists have resisted having their victims investigated by forensic doctors, so it has been possible for psychiatry to cover up the causes of death.As we say in Danish, psychiatry freewheeled for years. Nobody demanded anything in return for the 100 billion psychiatry cost the Danish society and taxpayers yearly. People that psychiatry hurt and disabled were put away on a pension that was paid for by the state, as was the healthcare they had received.  Nobody cared about these pensioners because they were labelled by psychiatry as being mentally sick and therefore unreliable, even through the person’s problem from the beginning was an ordinary problem like loosing a lover or another problem that could hit anybody.This means that 10.27% of the Danish population of total 5.534.738 people of which 90,5% are ethnic Danes are on drugs.Psychiatrists were emperors and they ruled in absolutely monarchy, distributing their “harmless” drugs to anybody entering their door. The influence on the brain of these drugs remained a big secret.But thanks to Dr. Peter Breggin and his books, explaining what the drugs do to the brain, the picture has now changed. Several big Danish media outlets have started calling the drugs “brain medicine”, and finally the Danes have started opening their eyes to the side effects and other former secrets of psychiatry.Also the Danish government has opened their eyes to all the pensioners that psychiatrists are creating. According to the Danish Ankestyrelsen, a public organisation taking care of statistics and development, 22 people a day or 7,985 persons a year are put on a social pension because of psychiatric treatment, many of those below the age of 40.On the opening of the parliament on October 12th, 2010 ,  the prime minister of Denmark in his opening speech said that this has to come to an end.  Also the Danish minister of health has shown he has read the work of Breggin. In a recent TV interview he asked where this growing number of mentally sick come from.  In the new government budget, which is right now negotiated, psychiatry is not included. They’ll have to ask for money from a so-called Satspulje, which is a fund. In this fund psychiatry will have to share money with other organisations. Further, mental hospitals are shut down and beds to the growing amount of mental sick Danes are being closed.Forensic doctors are now demanding investigations into the deaths of psychiatric patients. Our military is changing, too, concerning psychiatry.  Before when traumatized Danish soldiers returned from war in Iraq or lately Afghanistan, they were handed over to psychiatry, where they got drugs, making them crazy, which cost some very heartbreaking incidents in Denmark.But today, October 13th, the Danish minister of Health and minister of Defence were on the news, presenting proposals for a new veteran policy, supporting the soldiers in the right way, which does not include psychiatry.So in Denmark Peter Breggin has had a big influence by drawing the attention to the facts about what the drugs can do to the brain.Things have started moving. Denmark is now on the right trail, and sooner or later the whole truth will be revealed…A handful of the campaign group from LAP, driving through Denmark from north to south protesting against the many dead in psychiatry.LAP Expose': Dead In Psychiatry Poster, Campaign This poster telling about th4e LAP campaign ”Dead in psychiatry” was put in 13 major Danish cities, several months before the LAP protest that took place from September 25th to October 10th, 2010.  As a result of the advance preparation through distribution of this poster, the 40,000 postcards, and other communications, Danes, national media and Danish political leaders have been very responsive to the LAP campaign against deaths from psychiatry.The wife of the campaign leader and a LAP group member in front of a Danish mental hospital. The campaign was especially covered in the part of Denmark called Jutland.  The poster is a copy of the front page from the Danish newspaper, Nordjyske, that says: “poisoned by antidepressives”.Dr. Peter Breggin to Interview Danish Protest LeadersJoin Dr. Peter Breggin for his weekly Monday evening radio show.  Elsebeth Halckendorff and Jan Andersen, a leader of the Danish (Ex-) Users of Psychiatry will be Dr. Breggin's special guests on November 22nd, 2010.  Go here to Dr. Breggin's website to connect with his radio show. You can listen to the show, live, via the internet and you can listen to earlier shows with Dr. Breggin that have been archived.  ~ Thanks for reading about the exciting developments and the brave individuals in Denmark who are helping to protect and save lives.Remember to join our Center for the Study of Empathic TherapyVery best regards,Ginger Breggin, Executive DirectorCenter for the Study of Empathic Therapywww.empathictherapy.organd join in our growing efforts to encourage empathic, ethical human services and sciences in our culture.  Peter R. Breggin, MD is no longer affiliated with the Center for the Study of Psychiatry, informally known as International Center for the Study of Psychiatry and Psychology, which he founded and led from 1972-2002,and Dr. Breggin is no longer involved in its conferences.Copyright 2010 Peter R. Breggin, MD       Peter Breggin MD101 East State St, #112Ithaca New York 14850United States You are subscribed to this newsletter as This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. Please click here to modify your message preferences or to unsubscribe from any future mailings. We will respect all unsubscribe requests.

 This is one of the reasons why we are so proud of MindFreedom International and it's leader David Oaks.

 

VICTORY: MFI Alerts Help Win on Federal Agency's Web Forum

 

— filed under:

It's over. We won. Today, Friday, 22 October 2010, 5 pm EST was the deadline. And after the dust settled... After a last-minute campaign that temporarily pushed forced outpatient psychiatric drugging to the top of a USA forum about federal mental health goals... Enough of you 'voted' on the web to support the voice of mental health consumer/survivors... Challenge psychiatric drug industry undue power... And support more non-drug alternatives! [Update 9]

Pamela S. Hyde, J.D. is Administrator of SAMHSA, a large federal mental health agency, which has a $3.6 billion budget.

MindFreedom International News Update 9 - Friday, 22 Oct. 2010, 6:30 pm EDT

 

We won...

For hours today it was neck and neck.

But in the final hour we won!

Temporarily, it looked like a terrible 'idea' to promote more forced outpatient psychiatric drugging would get the most 'votes' on the overall web forum on goals by the federal mental health agency, SAMHSA.

But MindFreedom International and others sent out last minute e-mail alerts and tweets. The numbers are in.

According to the SAMHSA web site at this time:

First place: 1,102 votes: Articulate consumer and survivor inclusion and leadership in all SAMHSA initiatives as a priority!

Second place: 905 votes: MFI's idea: Challenge the undue influence of the pharmaceutical industry in mental health care.

Third place: 810 votes -- The awful 'idea' to "Increase use of Assisted Outpatient Treatment" was pushed back down from first place to third place.

 

Plus, in 7 of the 8 'sub-forums,' MFI's idea came in first! In the eight it came in 2nd.

Note: At this time, you can apparently add COMMENTS to the SAMHSA forums, though 'voting' is 'closed," see:

 

 

http://feedback.samhsa.gov/forums/77283-samhsa-s-strategic-initiatives

 

BELOW is the final last-minute alert that went out, that helped win the day, with more information and links to the SAMHSA site, and forums.

Thank you everyone!

 

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

 

LAST CHANCE:

*YOUR* DEADLINE: Today Friday, 22 October 2010, 5 pm EST

Last Minute Campaign by Those Pushing Forced Psychiatric Drugging Moves to Top!

 

    HOURS left for 'web votes' on USA federal mental health goals:

    Forced Psychiatric Drugs Vs. Mental Health Consumer/Survivor Voice!

 

    Just 40 more of you could:

    ** Stop "Forced Outpatient Drugging" From Winning!

    ** Help the Voice of Mental Health Consumers & Psychiatric Survivors WIN!

    Your last chance: 'Vote' deadline today, Friday, 22 October 2010 by 5:00 pm EST

 

With 3 hours to go, a last-minute campaign pushed MORE FORCED OUTPATIENT PSYCHIATRIC DRUGGING to the top of web 'votes' for 'ideas' in an online forum by the huge USA mental health agency, SAMHSA.

But mental health consumers and psychiatric survivors are FIGHTING BACK and GAINING GROUND!

1) 'VOTE' now for voice and inclusion of mental health consumers and psychiatric survivors. Click & give 3 votes here: 

 http://3.ly/SAMHSAinclusion

 

 

2) 'VOTE' to challenge undue influence of the pharmaceutical industry in mental health care, and for NON-DRUG alternatives. Click & give 3 votes here: 

 http://3.ly/SAMHSAundue

 

 

IMPORTANT: After 'voting' register and reply to a confirmation e-mail so your 'votes' count. If you do not get that, use SAMHSA's site to re-email it to you.

 

The SAMHSA online forums:

 

http://feedback.samhsa.gov/forums/77283-samhsa-s-strategic-initiatives

 

 

URGENTLY FORWARD this to others who may be interested! Phone and tweet your friends!

 

Provided by MindFreedom International, an independent activist coalition united for human rights and alternatives in mental health. For more info:

 

Background by MindFreedom International and more ways to help -- including on 8 SAMHSA sub-forums where we are winning, BELOW:

 

 

    Move these 'ideas' back to the top, today:

Challenge Psychiatric Drug Company "Undue Influence"

Create More Non-Drug Mental Health Alternatives (like Soteria House)

Support Consumer/Survivor Voice

 

Huge Federal Agency Vows to Use Your Feedback on Goals for Next Three Years!

Online 'votes' at first boosted 'ideas' to drastically change the mental health system to the top of web forums by SAMHSA, the huge USA federal mental health agency (Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration).

But former NAMI board member D. J. Jaffe launched a last-minute campaign for forced psychiatric drugging. Their 'idea' - "Increase use of Assisted Outpatient Treatment" - is now first.

Help choice and voice take back the top!

Your chance to 'vote' shuts down *today* Friday, 22 October 2010, at 5 pm EST.

(see links above for main votes)

IMPORTANT NOTE: After 'voting' on their site, be sure to reply to a confirmation e-mail so your 'votes' count. If you did not receive that, use SAMHSA's site to re-email it to you.~~~~~~~~~~~~

ADDITIONAL ACTIONS in just few more minutes!

 

You will find MindFreedom's 'idea' moving up in ALL forums!

Strategic 1: Prevention: NOW 2nd! Keep moving it up.    http://3.ly/SAMHSApreventUNDUEStrategic 2: Trauma and Justice: -- NOW FIRST! Keep it there!    http://3.ly/SAMHSAtraumaUNDUEStrategic 3: Military Families -- NOW FIRST! -- Support our vets and keep it there!    http://3.ly/SAMHSAvetsStrategic 4: Health Care Reform -- NOW FIRST! Keep it there!    http://3.ly/SAMHSAreformStrategic 5: Housing and Homelessness -- NOW FIRST! Keep it there!

    http://3.ly/SAMHSAhome

Strategic 6: Health Info Technology: --NOW FIRST -- keep it up!    http://3.ly/SAMHSAinfoStrategic 7: Data, Outcomes, and Quality -- NOW FIRST -- keep it up!    http://3.ly/SAMHSAdataPHARMAStrategic 8: Public Awareness and Support: --NOW FIRST -- keep it up!    http://3.ly/SAMHSApublicPHARMAThis 'idea' supports a statement created by key mental health consumer and psychiatric survivor leaders at a SAMHSA summit, but without SAMHSA's sanction. You can read about it here:http://www.mindfreedom.org/kb/psychiatric-drugs/bastille-2010You can read the SAMHSA eight initiatives here:http://www.samhsa.gov/about/strategy.aspxThe overall SAMHSA online feedback site is here:http://feedback.samhsa.gov/forums/77283-samhsa-s-strategic-initiativesRemember, you have a total of ten (10) votes in each of the forums for the eight initiatives, plus the overall forum. You can only use up to three (3) 'votes' for each 'idea.'So browse their online forums, and use your other 'votes' for good 'ideas' that need a boost.

You can click on 'top' to see the ones with the most votes. Or click on 'hot' to see the latest.You can comment on any 'idea' or post your own! Act NOW, before this Friday's deadline, 22 October 2010 at 5 pm EST.And please FORWARD this to others who may be interested!Thanks!~~~~~~~~~~~~Unite for independent activism in mental health.Join or renew your membership in MindFreedom International now!    http://www.mindfreedom.org/join-donateAs a member you benefit, too, including member-only web sites, MadMarket discounts, member services office, MF Shield, and more.You'll be a member when MFI celebrate's its 25th Silver Anniversary next year!You can give online securely via PayPal -- or there's info about how to join via phone, postal mail or fax...JUST CLICK HERE NOW TO JOIN OR RENEW:    http://www.mindfreedom.org/join-donateYou can also sign up there for automatic easy-on-your-budget monthly payments.~~~~~~~~~~~~If you did NOT receive this public news alert directly from the mindfreedom-news public e-mail alert system, please add your e-mail address to this free no-spam service, which does not require membership:http://www.intenex.net/lists/listinfo/mindfreedom-news~~~~~~~~~~~~

Document Actions

 Photos taken during the PsychOut conference in Toronto, Canada earlier this year.

 

http://www.facebook.com/album.php?aid=40671&id=139651356046714&fbid=167191173292732

Dollars for Docs

What Drug Companies are Paying Your Doctor

 

You can search by doctor and state here: http://projects.propublica.org/docdollars/

"Drug companies have long kept secret details of the payments they make to doctors for promoting their drugs. But seven companies have begun posting names and compensation on the Web, some as the result of legal settlements. ProPublica compiled these disclosures, totaling $258 million, into a single database that allows patients to search for their doctor."