Missouri Mental Health News

Recent information from the St. Louis Post-Dispatch indicates some progress in reducing psychiatric fraud and abuse in Missouri. Of course, the Post-Dispatch slants the information to beg for more government and insurance money for psychiatrists and psychiatric facilities; but we can take a win seeing the number of psychiatrists declining.

We do understand that people can have mental trauma needing compassion and effective care. Psychiatric drugs and other “treatments” such as shock therapy, however, are harmful. Not only do psychiatrists not understand the etiology (cause) of any mental disorder, they cannot cure them. In effect, psychiatrists are still saying that mental problems are incurable and that the afflicted are condemned to lifelong suffering—on psychotropic drugs. Psychotropic drugs, however, are unworkable and dangerous, and while they may temporarily mask some symptoms they do not treat, correct or cure any physical disease or condition.

We generally take cure to mean the elimination of some unwanted condition with some effective treatment. The primary purpose of any mental health treatment must be the therapeutic care and treatment of individuals who are suffering emotional disturbance. The only effective measure of this treatment must be “patients recovering and being sent, sane, back into society as productive individuals.” This, we would call a cure. Psychiatry produces no cures.

There are plenty of healthy alternatives to psychiatry. The correct action on a seriously mentally disturbed person is a full searching clinical examination by a competent medical, not psychiatric, doctor.

The real problem with the psychiatric industry is that psychiatrists fraudulently diagnose life’s problems as an “illness”, and stigmatize unwanted behavior or study problems as “diseases.” Psychiatry’s stigmatizing labels, programs and treatments are harmful junk science; their diagnoses of “mental disorders” are a hoax – unscientific, fraudulent and harmful. All psychiatric treatments, not just psychiatric drugs, are dangerous.

There is no licensed psychiatrist in 72 Missouri counties. That’s some progress. People needing help in those areas need competent medical care, not psychiatric abuse.

A majority of psychiatrists don’t accept Medicaid, and a growing number refuse all health insurance plans. That’s some progress. We should be providing funding and insurance coverage only for proven, workable treatments that verifiably and dramatically improve or cure mental health problems.

The average wait to see a psychiatrist in the St. Louis area is estimated at 10 to 30 days and can reach six months for children and teens; what are they doing in the meantime? They should be exploring non-psychiatric alternatives.

There are 1,174 psychiatric hospital beds in the state, down from 2,600 in 1990. That’s some progress. Contact your Missouri state legislators and encourage them to continue reducing psychiatric hospital beds in favor of real and effective medical treatment.

Many people with mental trauma end up in county jails when they fail to find treatment elsewhere. This is not progress; this is overloading an already failing system with more failures. A major part of the treatment for prison inmates (used less for rehabilitation than for managing and disciplining inmates) is a regimen of powerful psychiatric drugs, despite numerous studies showing that aggression, violence and suicide are tied to their use. Prisons and jails have become America’s new mental asylums. The number of individuals with serious mental symptoms in prisons and jails exceeds the number of patients in state psychiatric hospitals tenfold. The cost of maintaining these inmates in prison skyrockets when psychiatric drugs are being used.

The Veterans Health Administration has also been actively recruiting psychiatrists from private practices to help treat an increase in so-called post-traumatic stress disorder among veterans. Since the 9/11 terrorist attacks, CCHR has investigated how psychiatrists are using the “War on Terror” to broaden their niche within the military to push mind-altering drugs on not only the fighting forces, but on veterans and the public at large.

Contact your Missouri state legislators to introduce and pass legislation designed to curb psychiatric fraud and abuse. For examples of Model Legislation, click here.

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