(Image taken from: http://herinst.org/sbeder/corppower/pharm-agenda.html)
by CCHR Int
A new study, the result of a joint collaboration between Indiana University and Columbia University, and published by the American Journal of Psychiatry, reports that prejudice and discrimination still exists among people with serious mental illness. Headlines include “Mental Illness Stigma Hard to Shake, Survey Finds” and “Despite Deeper Understanding of Mental Illness, Stigma Lingers.”
So what exactly is behind this study? Taking aside the fact that Columbia University is well known for its collaboration with pharmaceutical companies, its medical center having collaborated with AstraZeneca, GlaxoSmithKline, Janssen Pharmaceutica, Merck, Novartis and Pfizer. Or the fact that Indiana University received a $1 million grant from Eli Lilly.
With a seemingly altruistic agenda, the fact is the campaign to end the “stigma” of mental illness is one driven and funded by those who benefit from more and more people being labeled mentally ill—pharma, psychiatry and pharmaceutical front groups such as NAMI and CHADD to name but a few. For example, take NAMI’s campaign to stop the “stigma” and “end discrimination” against the mentally ill—the “Founding Sponsors” were Abbott Labs, Bristol-Myers Squibb, Eli Lilly, Janssen, Pfizer, Novartis, SmithKline Beecham and Wyeth-Ayerst Labs. (For an in-depth look at what else Pharma funds and how this funding not only helps set mental health policies but campaigns such as this, read Pharmaceutical Industry Agenda Setting in Mental Health Policies at the bottom of this post)
The fact is that the “stigmatization ” is coming from those that benefit from people being labeled/stigmatized with mental disorders that have no medical/biological evidence. Case in point, if you are rebellious, you are “stigmatized” with the label “oppositional defiant disorder.” If your kid acts like a kid he is “stigmatized” with the label “ADHD.” If you are sad, unhappy (even temporarily) you are “stigmatized” with the label “depressive” or “bi-polar disorder.” If you are shy you are “stigmatized” with the label “social anxiety disorder.” Moreover, you or your child are now stigmatized for life as this label, which is based solely on opinion, is now part of your medical record, despite the fact there is no medical evidence to prove you are “mentally ill”.
This is also true of people diagnosed “schizophrenic.” There is no medical test to verify someone has a brain abnormality or medical condition of schizophrenia. And while no one claims people can’t become psychotic, the fact remains there is no biological evidence to support schizophrenia as a brain disease or chemical abnormality. And consider this, if people do become psychotic, or irrational, is it in fact caused by some underlying medical (not psychiatric) problem? And why did a 15-year multiple follow up study find that there was a 40% recovery rate for those diagnosed schizophrenic who did not take antipsychotics, versus a 5% rate for those who did? What happened to their supposed “brain disease?” Did it simply vanish? Moreover, if they could recover from such a mental state, do they deserve the “stigma” of “schizophrenia” still being part of their permanent medical record? For life? Think about it. Imagine you were extremely overweight—obese. You lose all the weight so you are no longer obese. Yet your medical records continue to say that you are.
And if schizophrenia is in fact a “disease” despite the fact there is no medical or biological evidence (note we did not say speculation, or theories, but evidence) then why is it that psychiatrist Loren Mosher, the former Chief of Schizophrenia Research for the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH) openly state that there is no biological condition of schizophrenia as a disease or brain malfunction? And why didn’t the mental health industry take advantage of his 2-year-outcome studies proving that those diagnosed schizophrenic could recover without the use of drugs? Is it because this proved that recovery was possible and thereby disproved the theory that something was wrong with their brain? Or was it the fact that they recovered without the use of drugs, thereby threatening a multi-billion dollar pharmaceutical industry? Maybe this explains why Mosher was fired from his position at NIMH (http://www.moshersoteria.com/)
As a final note regarding “stigmatization,” keep in mind that psychiatrists admit there is no recovery from “mental illness.” They admit no cures. So once you are labeled—game over.
The new “study” also reports, ” more people now believe that illnesses like schizophrenia and depression are caused by chemical imbalances in the brain.” This is marketing at its best—say people believe in a chemical imbalance so you don’t have to bother pointing out the fact that there is no chemical imbalance . How can the layperson be sure of this? It’s simple. Find one person who has a lab test showing their chemical imbalance. Not one of the millions of people taking drugs to cure their “chemical imbalance” has a lab test showing they have an imbalance. Now it really doesn’t take a rocket scientist to figure that out… does it?
For more information about pharmaceutical front groups see this: http://www.cchrint.org/psycho-pharmaceutical-front-groups/
For an in-depth look at this topic, read Pharmaceutical Industry Agenda Setting in Mental Health Policies
Abstract: The development of political agenda-setting through the use of sophisticated public relations techniques is threatening to undermine the delicate balance of representative democracy. This has important ramifications for policies aimed at providing mental health services and the implementation of mental health laws. The principal agenda setters in this area are pharmaceutical companies with commercial reasons to promote public policies that expand the sales of their products. They have manufactured highly effective advocacy coalitions that incorporate front groups in order to set the policy agenda for mental health. However, policies tailored to their commercial purpose are not necessarily beneficial either for patients or the society at large.
Tags: American Journal of Psychiatry, antipsychotic, Astra Zeneca, bi-polar, CHADD, chemical imbalance, Columbia University, depression, Discrimination, Eli Lilly, GlaxoSmithKline, Indiana University, Janseen, Loren Mosher, mental illness, Merck, NAMI, National Alliance of Mental Illness, NIMH, Novartis, Pfizer, pharma-funded, schizophrenia, social anxiety disorder, stigma, stigma of mental illness
This entry was posted on Friday, September 17th, 2010 at 5:52 pm and is filed under News. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.