AbleChild.org – May 7, 2014 By Sheila Matthews Gallo The author of the op-ed of May 6, 2014, “Mental health treatment is not perfect, but…
Connecticut Mirror – May 5, 2014 By Sheila Matthews Gallo In response to the op-ed of Saturday, May 3rd, titled “Biological change can be verified…
A “model” program that was part of a controversial plan to screen all US citizens for mental illness has announced that it is closing down.
On 15 November, TeenScreen, a program to detect depression in young people, announced on its website: “The National Center will be winding down its program at the end of this year.”
A highly effective public relations technique is the “third party technique” of creating front groups to endorse or promote the need of any service or product. The first party is the original group or client that would benefit more from increased public trust or affinity. The second group is the public or consumers. A third group is created with a contrived name to appear publicly as a disinterested party endorsing the industry of the first party.
Often, the third party, or front group, uses a name that implies authority or concern for the public’s welfare or concerns. You can be sure these bogus front groups are usually only concerned about their clients welfare and themselves.
For any mental illness or passing mood swing that may trouble a person, the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders — better known as the DSM — has a label and a code. Recurring bad dreams? That may be a Nightmare Disorder, or 307.47. Narcolepsy uses the same digits in a different order: 347.00. Fancy feather ticklers? That sounds like Fetishism, or 302.81. Then there’s the ultimate catch-all for vague sadness or uneasiness, General Anxiety Disorder, or 300.02. That’s a label almost everyone can lay claim to.Drug companies are particularly eager to win over faculty psychiatrists at prestigious academic medical centers. Called “key opinion leaders” (KOLs) by the industry, these are the people who through their writing and teaching influence how mental illness will be diagnosed and treated. They also publish much of the clinical research on drugs and, most importantly, largely determine the content of the DSM. In a sense, they are the best sales force the industry could have, and are worth every cent spent on them. Of the 170 contributors to the current version of the DSM (the DSM-IV-TR), almost all of whom would be described as KOLs, ninety-five had financial ties to drug companies, including all of the contributors to the sections on mood disorders and schizophrenia.