Immigrant Children Forcibly Injected with Psychiatric Drugs

A lawsuit filed April 18, 2018 claims that children detained by the Immigration and Naturalization Service (INS) and the Department of Health and Human Services’ Office of Refugee Resettlement (ORR) are unlawfully, routinely and forcibly given multiple psychotropic drugs without theirs or their parents’ consent in order to control their behavior rather than for any medically necessary reason (particularly those housed at the Shiloh Residential Treatment Center in Manvel, Texas), told little or nothing about these drugs, and often suffer negative side effects without recourse.

The lawsuit alleges that children were told they would not be released or see their parents unless they took drugs and that they only were receiving vitamins.

Taxpayers have paid more than $1.5 billion in the past four years to private companies operating immigrant youth shelters accused of serious lapses in care, including forced psychiatric drugging, neglect and sexual and physical abuse. In nearly all cases reviewed, the federal government continued contracts with these companies after serious allegations were raised.

This smacks of the forced over-drugging of foster children; we think both cases — the over-drugging of foster children and the over-drugging of immigrant children — are examples of coercive psychiatry at its worst. Harming children in the name of health is despicable, and the psychiatrists responsible should be in jail.

Claiming that even normal childhood behavior is a mental disorder and that drugs are the solution, psychiatrists and psychologists have insinuated themselves into positions of authority over children.

The entirety of psychological and psychiatric programs for children are founded on the tacit assumptions that mental health “experts” know all about the mind and mental phenomena, know a better way of life, a better value system and how to improve the lives of children beyond the understanding and capability of not only parents, but everyone else in society.

The reality is that all child mental health programs are designed to control the lives of children towards specific ideological objectives at the expense of not only the children’s sanity and well-being, but also that of their parents and of society itself.

Psychiatrists have been largely responsible for creating the problems they have ostensibly tried to solve. They are the last people to whom we should turn to solve the problems of our children.

If your child has been subjected to psychological/psychiatric screening without your consent, or coercively drugged and harmed, consult a lawyer to determine your right to prosecute criminally and civilly.

Support legislative measures that will protect children from psychiatric and psychological interference and which will remove their destructive influence from schools and other social institutions. Ultimately, psychiatry and psychology must be eliminated from society and their coercive and unworkable methods should never be funded by the State.

For more information click here to download and read the CCHR report “Harming Youth — Psychiatry Destroys Young Minds“.

Psychiatric Drugs, School Violence, and Big Pharma Cover-Up

A study published June 12, 2018 from the University of Illinois at Chicago suggests that more than one-third (37.2%) of U.S. adults may be using prescription drugs that have the potential to cause depression or increase the risk of suicide.
[JAMA. 2018;319(22);2289-2298. doi:10.1001/jama.2018.6741]

Information about more than 26,000 adults from 2005 to 2014 was analyzed, along with more than 200 commonly prescribed drugs. However, many of these drugs are also available over the counter, so these results may underestimate the true prevalence of drugs having side effects of depression.

In other words, the use of prescription drugs, not just psychiatric drugs, that have depression or suicide as a potential adverse reaction is fairly common, and the more drugs one takes (called polypharmacy), the greater the likelihood of depression occurring as a side effect. “The likelihood of concurrent depression was most pronounced among adults concurrently using 3 or more medications with depression as a potential adverse effect, including among adults treated with antidepressants.”

Approximately 15% of adults who used three or more of these drugs concurrently experienced symptoms of depression or suicidal thoughts, compared with just 5% for those not using any of these drugs. Roughly 7.6% of adults using just one of these drugs reported a side effect of depression or suicidal thoughts during the study period, and 9% for those using two of these drugs. These results were the same whether the drugs were psychotropic or not. Depression was determined by asking nine questions related to the symptoms defined in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-5).

“Commonly used depression screening instruments, however, do not incorporate evaluations of prescribed medications that have depression as a potential adverse effect.” In other words, so-called depression screening tests can register false positives when the person is taking one or more of roughly 200 prescription drugs.

We thought we should dig a little deeper into this phenomenon.

First, understand that there is no depression “disease”. A person can certainly have symptoms of feeling depressed, but this is not a medical condition in itself. An example of a medical condition with a symptom of depression would be a vitamin B1 (thiamine) deficiency. You don’t fix it with an antidepressant; you fix it with vitamin B1. There are hundreds of medical conditions that may have mental symptoms, just as there are hundreds of drugs that can cause or worsen these symptoms. Finding the actual causes with appropriate clinical tests and then fixing what is found is the correct way to proceed.

This leads to a topic known as CYP450, which stands for Cytochrome P450 enzymes. Cytochrome means “cellular pigment” and is a protein found in blood cells. Scientists understand these enzymes to be responsible for metabolizing almost half of all drugs currently on the market, including psychiatric drugs.

These are the major enzymes involved in drug metabolism, which is the breakdown of drugs in the liver or other organs so that they can be eliminated from the body once they have performed their function.

If these drugs are not metabolized and eliminated once they have done their work, they build up and become concentrated in the body, and then act as toxins. The possibility of harmful side effects, or adverse reactions, increases as the toxic concentration increases. The ballpark estimate is that each year 2.2 million Americans are hospitalized for adverse reactions and over 100,000 die from them.

Some people are deficient in CYP450 or have diminished capacity to metabolize these drugs, which may be a genetic or other issue. Individuals with no or poorly performing CYP450 enzymes are much more likely to suffer the side effects of prescription drugs, particularly psychiatric drugs known to have side effects of depression, violence and suicide.

These metabolic processes are immature at birth and up to three years old, and this may result in an increased risk for drug toxicity in infants and young children. Furthermore, certain drugs or certain excipients in vaccines may inhibit activation of CYP450 enzymes, again resulting in an increased risk for the accumulation of non-metabolized drugs and the resultant increase in adverse side effects such as depression, violence and suicide.

The side effects caused by a CYP450 deficiency and its subsequent failure to metabolize any one of hundreds of drugs can then be misdiagnosed as a mental illness, the patient then being prescribed more psychiatric drugs in a mistaken attempt to treat those side effects, further complicating the problems.

It is estimated that 10% of Caucasians and 7% of African Americans are Cytochrome P450 deficient.

The psychiatric and pharmaceutical industries have been aware of this phenomenon for some time, yet they have continued to push psychiatric drugs at an ever increasing rate, and the dramatic increase in symptoms of depression, suicide, and school violence is a direct result.

No one should be prescribed these types of drugs without adequate testing for a CYP450 deficiency, in order to determine their risk potential for adverse reactions. The test is not “standard of care” so one has to ask for it; but beware, they will still recommend an alternative drug if the original one cannot be easily metabolized. Better yet, stop prescribing all psychiatric drugs and find out with proper medical, clinical tests what the real problems are and treat those. Full informed consent is always indicated.

Any psychiatrist or pharmaceutical company that has knowingly withheld evidence about the relationship between CYP450 enzymes and drug side effects should be subject to both prosecution and litigation.

Medical students should be educated about these relationships.

For more information click on any of the links in this newsletter.

“Shoot ’em up” Is No Longer Just for Westerns

Once is happenstance, twice is coincidence, three times is enemy action.”
[with thanks to Charles Stross in The Apocalypse Codex.]

The Citizens Commission on Human Rights (CCHR), a mental health watchdog that has investigated school and other mass shootings since the Columbine High School Shooting in 1999, warns about pouring hundreds of millions of dollars into more mental health services in response to the Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School shooting on Valentine’s Day.

An investigation into the shooting must include what psychotropic drugs the alleged shooter, Nikolas Cruz, has been prescribed and the fact that he had apparently undergone “behavioral health” treatment which did nothing to prevent the murderous outcome. A 2016 Florida Department of Children and Family Services report indicated that he was regularly taking “medication” for Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD); these types of psychotropic drugs are known to have violence and suicide as potential side effects.

CCHR International’s investigation into school violence reveals that at least 36 school shootings and/or school-related acts of violence have been committed by those taking or withdrawing from psychiatric drugs resulting in 172 wounded and 80 killed.

At least 27 international drug regulatory agency warnings have been issued on psychiatric drugs being linked to mania, violence, hostility, aggression, psychosis, and homicidal ideation (thoughts or fantasies of homicide that can be planned).

Cruz, 19, charged over the Parkland, Florida shooting, is a prime example of the failure of the mental health system. Expecting better mental health treatment to solve these problems is a forlorn hope, since it promises something that has not and cannot be delivered.

Pouring more funds into a mental health system that keeps failing and continues to use “treatments” that may induce violent and suicidal behavior in a percentage of those taking them, is a recipe for future disaster. Recognize that the repeated violence caused by psychiatric drugging of school children is neither happenstance nor coincidence, and is in fact an enemy action, and the enemy is psychiatry.

The survivors of the Parkland shooting, the families of those killed and the community at large deserves answers and accountability. CCHR is calling on families with knowledge of a loved one who has experienced treatment abuse and for whistleblowers who have concerns about any behavioral facility to contact CCHR by reporting the abuse here.

For more information read this news release.

Missouri Foster Care Children at Risk

Following up on the federal class action lawsuit (M.B. v. Corsi) against the Missouri Department of Social Services for the overuse of harmful and addictive psychotropic drugs among vulnerable foster children.

More than 30 percent of Missouri’s 13,000 foster children are on at least one psychotropic medication, with 20 percent taking two or more psychotropic medications at the same time. This is almost twice the national rate of such prescriptions. These drugs are known to cause violence and suicide, as well as being addictive.

For the first time, a federal court has ruled that the failure to oversee the administration of powerful psychotropic medications to children in foster care could violate their rights under the Constitution.

On January 8, 2018 U.S. District Judge Nanette Laughrey denied the state’s motion to dismiss the children’s due process claims. The judge was particularly concerned that the state, by its own admission, fails to maintain complete medical records for the foster children in its care, and does not provide updated health information to foster parents or doctors.

Foster children are drugged with harmful psychotropics at 13 times the rate of children living with their parents.

Recognize that the real problem is that psychiatrists fraudulently diagnose children’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.

Click here for more information about psychiatric drugs harming foster care children.

What Makes Special Education Special?

The Special School District in St. Louis County, Missouri has an annual budget over $400 Million for 7 schools, over 2600 teachers, and over 24,000 students.

The July 2002 President’s Commission on Excellence in Special Education revealed the source of a deeply troubled Special Education system: 40 percent of kids are being labeled with “learning disorders” simply because they have not been taught to read. This finding leaves no doubt that the subjectivity of the term “learning disorder” must be a central point of Special Education reform.

Eighty percent of children (or 2.4 million) labeled as having a “specific learning disability” could be taught in a normal school setting but with greater emphasis on phonics and academic basics. We suspect that all children, not just special school district children, could benefit from this.

State and federal governments are already wasting $28 billion per year due to unscientific categories in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-5). This money would be better channeled into providing more teachers and workable educational methods that get actual results.

The DSM-5 lists these ridiculous items of “mental illness”:

  • “Academic or educational problem”
  • “Specific learning disorder”
  • “Specific learning disorder, With impairment in mathematics”
  • “Specific learning disorder, With impairment in reading”
  • “Specific learning disorder, With impairment in written expression”

The primary purpose of Congress’ original IDEA (Individuals with Disabilities in Education Act) law in 1975 was to provide a free and appropriate education for children with hearing, sight, speech and other physical handicaps. When the term “handicapped” was changed to “learning disabled,” children who fidget, interrupt their teachers, or simply fall behind academically were suddenly considered “disabled.”

Over the ensuing years, the funding has been largely funneled, instead, to children with “learning disorders,” a term so subjective that children who fidget, butt into line or interrupt their teachers are so labeled. In most cases the children were subsequently prescribed cocaine-like, mind-altering drugs. Many of these children simply have never been taught to read. Clearly, there is a critical need to provide an objective, scientifically based definition of “learning disability,” and this must be the central point of reforming IDEA.

Labeling a child with these “disorders” led to school personnel threatening parents to place their child on a psychiatric drug as a requisite to remaining in class, or face the child being dismissed from school.

Due to the hazards of these drugs, in order to receive federal funds under the IDEA, the “Prohibition on Mandatory Medication Amendment” (H.R.1350) was signed into law by President George W. Bush on December 3, 2004 and requires schools to implement policies that prohibit schoolchildren being forced onto psychiatric drugs as a requisite for their education. The law states, “The psychological/psychiatric system should not be able to abuse Special Education by diagnosing childhood and educational problems and failure as ‘mental disorders.'”

Email Special School District Superintendent Don Bohannon at dbohannon@ssdmo.org and let him know what you think about this.

Click here for more information about mental health screening in schools.

Doctors in Schools

Through psychiatry’s stigmatizing labels, false explanations, easy-seizure commitment laws and often brutal, depersonalizing “treatments” and deadening, mind-altering drugs, thousands needlessly fall into psychiatry’s coercive system every day all over the world. It is a system which exemplifies human rights abuse.

“In the Australian state of Victoria, a state program kicked in at the beginning of 2017 to mandate that children as young as 12 should see a doctor in school at least once a week, to receive drugs and medical treatment without parental consent.”

“Select Victorian Government secondary schools will work together with local general practices to enable primary health care services to be delivered on school premises.

One suspects that this “Doctors in Schools” program is actually intended to consolidate government control over children and line the pockets of pharmaceutical corporations. You know that these doctors will be prescribing psychiatric drugs to these schoolchildren.

In his 1932 novel, Brave New World, Aldous Huxley depicts a “utopian” but totalitarian society, one that is insane and bent on control. It is a controlled civilization, using, as Huxley stated, the “technique of suggestion – through infant conditioning and, later, with the aid of drugs.”

In 2003 the release of the U.S. New Freedom Commission on Mental Health Report recommended that all 52 million American schoolchildren be “screened” for “mental illness,” claiming – without proof – that “early detection, assessment, and links with “treatment” could “prevent mental health problems from worsening.” “Treatment” ultimately means drugs – usually the most expensive ones that effectively create lifetime mental health patients – for which the government and insurance agencies can be billed.

Children worldwide are under extremely dangerous assault. Today, parents and teachers are also deceived in the name of improved mental health and better education.

In the U.S. alone, 1.5 million children and adolescents on antidepressants are at risk of known, drug-induced violent or suicidal side effects.

In Missouri, Medicaid spends $16 Million per year on psychiatric drugs for roughly 20,000 children in state foster care. Foster care babies less than a year old are being given barbiturates to make them sleep. The side effects of barbiturates include addiction, depression, disorientation, hallucinations, kidney disease, and liver disease.

This information is not easy, comfortable reading. Ultimately the harshest reality you will have to face is that children urgently need our help and protection. Without that, the future for one and all is at serious risk.

For more information on harmful mental health screening, assessments, evaluations and programs within our schools, go to http://www.cchrstl.org/screening.shtml.

Missouri Foster Care Proposed Legislation

[See our previous newsletter on drugging foster care children in Missouri.]

Here is another piece of proposed legislation for protecting foster care children from being needlessly poisoned by psychiatric drugs. Contact your state legislators about this. (This applies to any state, not just Missouri.)

FOR THE STATE OF MISSOURI

PROPOSED REGULATION

Entitled: “CHEMICAL ABUSE: ENDANGERING THE HEALTH OF A CHILD OR YOUTH IN FOSTER CARE.”

WHEREAS: Child endangerment refers to an act or omission that renders a child subject to psychological, emotional or physical abuse. The child who is subjected to such endangerment is called an abused child or a neglected child. Endangerment that results in serious physical illness or injury is a felony.1

WHEREAS: Reckless Endangerment consists of acts that create a substantial risk of serious physical injury to another person. The accused person isn’t required to intend the resulting or potential harm, but must have acted in a way that showed a disregard for the foreseeable consequences of the actions.2

WHEREAS: The Child Abuse Prevention and Treatment Act of 2010 (CAPTA) defines “child abuse and neglect” as meaning, “at a minimum, any recent act or failure to act,” which “results in death, serious physical or emotional harm…”3

WHEREAS: Psychotropic medications have adverse effects including: stroke,4 pancreatitis5, obesity, with children taking atypical antipsychotics adding eight to fifteen percent to their weight after the drugs for less than 12 weeks.6 A variety of drugs targeted towards the central nervous system are associated with cardiac side effects, including arrhythmia and sudden death.7 Type 2 diabetes is associated with some atypical antipsychotics.8 Symptoms of psychosis or mania, particularly hallucinations, are linked to methylphenidate (ADHD) drugs9, suicidality10, violent behavior11, agitation, hostility and impulsivity in antidepressants12, akathisia (drug-induced restlessness) in antidepressants and antipsychotics13, tardive dyskinesia (permanent impairment of voluntary movement) and other movement disorders14, and gynecomastia (female breast growth in boys prescribed the antipsychotic Risperdal).15 Neuroleptic malignant syndrome (NMS) is a severe iatrogenic and potentially fatal complication of antipsychotics.16 At least 20 psychotropic drugs have been linked to violent behavior, with reports of homicide, physical assaults, cases indicating physical abuse, homicidal ideation, and cases described as violence-related symptoms.17 Mood stabilizer drugs are associated with behavioral problems, including aggression and hyperactivity.18

WHEREAS: Foster children are being given cocktails of these powerful drugs and federal inspectors found more than half the children nationwide were poorly monitored.19 The Government Accountability Office (GAO) estimates that between 20 and 39 percent of foster care children are prescribed psychotropic drugs.20 The Congressional Research Service found the number of children in foster care taking a psychiatric drug was more than four times the rate among children overall.21 One in nine children in foster care is prescribed antipsychotics, with potential life-debilitating and life-threatening effects.22

RECOMMENDATION

AMEND: Foster Care regulations to protect foster children and youths from the prescription of psychotropic drugs that can result in physical abuse or injury or endanger the child’s health.

The regulation addresses any child or youth under the care of state Child and Family Services in respect to: i) psychotropic drugs prescribed and administered them, ii) off-label prescribing, and iii) the observation of serious adverse effects of the prescribed psychotropic drugs and neglecting or failing to discontinue the medication, and where such acts result in disfiguring, physically damaging or life-threatening injury or effect to the child or youth. Therefore:

a) Such an act shall be considered chemical abuse.

b) Chemical abuse shall constitute “child abuse,” punishable in accordance with state child abuse laws.

 

References

1 “Child Endangerment Law and Legal Definition,” https://definitions.uslegal.com/c/child-endangerment/

2 “Reckless Endangerment Law and Legal Definition,” https://definitions.uslegaLcom/r/reckless-endangerment/

3 http://www.childsworld.ca.gov/res/OCAP/CAPTA-FactSheet.pdf

4 http://www.lawyersandsettlements.com/lawsuit/adderall.html#.UzJJqs7Xlqw

5 “Pancreatitis Risk Seen in Schizophrenia Drugs,” The New York Times, 2 Sept. 2003, http://www.nytimes.com/2003/09/02/health/pancreatitis-risk-seen-in-schizophrenia-drugs.html

6 Duff Wilson, “Weight Gain Associated with Antipsychotic Drugs,” The New York Times, 27 Oct 2009, http://www.nytimes.com/2009/10/28/business/28psych.html

“Drugged as Children, Foster-Care Alumni Speak Out, Use of Powerful Antipsychotics on Youths in Such Homes Comes Under Greater Scrutiny,” The Wall Street Journal, 23 Feb 2014, http://online.wsj.com/news/artic!es/SB10001424052702303442704579361333470749104

7 http://www.aafp.org/afp/2010/0301/p617.html; “Psychotropic Drugs, Cardiac Arrhythmia, and Sudden Death,” J Clin Psychopharmacol, 2003;23: 58-77; http://resources.childhealthcare.org/resources/Psychotropic_Meds__Arrhythmia_and_Sudden_Death.pdf

8 http://www.medsafe.govt.nz/profs/PUarticles/antipsychdiabetes.htm; http://www.jabfm.org/content/16/3/251.full.pdf

9 https://www.fda.gov/ohrms/dockets/ac/06/briefing/2006-4210b_11_01_AdverseEvents.pdf

10 https://www.fda.gov/downloads/Drugs/DrugSafety/InformationbyDrugClass/UCM173233.pdf; https://www.fda.gov/ohrms/dockets/ac/06/briefing/2006-4210b_11_01_AdverseEvents.pdf

11 https://www.fda.gov/ohrms/dockets/ac/06/briefing/2006-4210b_11_01_AdverseEvents.pdf

12 “Worsening Depression and Suicidality in Patients Being Treated with Antidepressants Medications,” US Food and Drug Administration Public Health Advisory, 22 Mar. 2004.

13 “Worsening Depression and Suicidality in Patients Being Treated with Antidepressants Medications,” US Food and Drug Administration Public Health Advisory, 22 Mar. 2004.

14 “Anti-Psychotic Drugs Like Risperdal Overprescribed in Foster Children,” The Legal Examiner, 6 May 2014, http://newyork.legalexaminer.com/fda-prescription-drugs/anti-psychotic-drugs-like-risperdal-overprescribed-in-foster-children/

15 http://www.drugwatch.com/risperdal/

16 “Neuroleptic Malignant Syndrome in Children and Adolescents on Atypical Antipsychotic Medication: A Review,” J Child Adolesc Psychopharmacol. 2009 Aug; 19(4): 415-422, https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2861947/

17 Thomas J. Moore, Joseph Glenmullen, Curt D. Furbert, “Prescription Drugs Associated with Reports of Violence Towards Others,” Public Library of Science ONE, Vol. 5, Iss. 12, December 2010.

18 Elisabetta Patorno, et al., “Anticonvulsant Medications and the Risk of Suicide, Attempted Suicide, or Violent Death,” Journal of the American Medical Association, Vol. 303, No. 14, April 14, 2010; http://jama.jamanetwork.com/articJe.aspx?articleid=185674 http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/20388896.

19 “Federal study finds alarming use of antipsychotics among nation’s poor children, foster kids,” CalNews.com., 30 Mar. 2015, https//calnews.com/2015/03/30/federal-study-finds-alarming-use-of-antipsychotics-among-nations-poor-children-foster-kids/

20 Kelly Patricia O’Meara, “Congress Saying Foster Kids are ‘Over-drugged’ is Like Saying Nuclear Waste is ‘Overly-toxic,’” 3 June 2014, http://www.cchrint.org/2014/06/03/congress-saying-foster-kids-are-over-drugged-is-like-saying-nuclear-waste-is-overly-toxic/

21 Op. Cit., Kelly Patricia O’Meara, “Congress Saying Foster Kids…”

22 “New study finds that drugs for schizophrenics are regularly dispensed to foster kids,” Business Insider, 9 June 2016, http://www.businessinsider.com/many -foster -kids-medicated-with-antipsychotics-2016-6

Take Action – Missouri Legislature – Foster Care

Periodically we let you know the progress of various proposed legislation making its way through the Missouri General Assembly and suggest ways for you to contribute your viewpoint to your state Representative and state Senator.

You can find your Representative and Senator, and their contact information, by entering your 9-digit zip code here.

This time, we’d like to discuss Senate Bill SB160, which Creates the Foster Care Bill of Rights, sponsored by Senator David Sater (R, District 29).

“This act establishes and enumerates the Foster Care Bill of Rights. The Children’s Division shall provide every school-aged foster child and his or her foster parent with an age-appropriate orientation and explanation of the bill of rights, as well as make them readily available and easily accessible online. Additionally, every Children’s Division office, residential care facility, child placing agency, or other agency involved in the care and placement of foster children shall post the bill of rights in the office, facility, or agency.”

This foster care bill of rights is primarily concerned with familial stability, which we think is a good thing. We would like to suggest an amendment aimed at reducing the amount of harmful psychotropic drugs regularly given to foster children in Missouri’s care.

Missouri Foster Care serves individuals age 0 to 21; not all states provide care to age 21. In FY2014 Missouri extended Medicaid benefits up to age 26 for individuals who have aged out of foster care. Medicaid pays for the psychotropic drugs given to foster children.

The high rates of psychotropic medication use in the Medicaid population, risks associated with these drugs, and research documenting inappropriate prescribing, have raised concerns, especially for children involved in the child welfare system.

Studies suggest that appropriate prescribing practices, that is, adhering to FDA-approved use and accepted clinical guidelines, may not always be followed for certain Medicaid populations such as the high-risk populations of children in foster care. In actual fact, multiple studies and reports have found that children in foster care are vulnerable to inappropriate or excessive medication use. Children in foster care are often prescribed more than one psychotropic medication at the same time. A review in Missouri once found some children in foster care prescribed five or more psychotropic drugs.

Psychotropic Drug Classes given to children in Missouri foster care (contact CCHR STL at CCHRSTL@CCHRSTL.ORG  for the complete report, or download it from cchrstl.org/foster.shtml):

ADHD
Antianxiety
AntidepressantAntipsychotic_Combo
Antidepressants_MAOIs
Antidepressants_SSRIsAndSimilar
Antidepressants_Tricyclics
Antipsychotics_FirstGeneration
Antipsychotics_SecondGeneration
Barbiturates
Bipolar Disorder
InsomniaNarcolepsySleepDisorders

Total foster care drug costs in Missouri have averaged roughly $16 Million per year, with a total for the five years 2010-2014 over $81 Million. All of these psychotropic drugs given to Missouri foster care children between the ages of 0 and 26 are harmful and can have serious side effects including violence and suicide.

The top costs are for ADHD drugs and Antipsychotics for all ages. ADHD drug costs appear to be increasing year over year. Babies less than a year old are more commonly given Barbiturates, one presumes as a remedy for insomnia. Barbiturates are highly dangerous because of the small difference between a
normal dose and an overdose.

For all these reasons, CCHR would like to see an amendment for SB160 to this effect:

Foster Children have the right:
(a) To be free of the administration of medication or chemical substances unless authorized by a physician,
(b) To be informed of the risks and benefits of psychotropic medication in an age appropriate manner,
(c) To tell their doctor that they disagree with any recommendation to prescribe psychotropic medication,
(d) To go to the judge with an advocate of their choice and state that they object to any recommendation to prescribe psychotropic medication,
(e) To refuse the administration of psychotropic or other medication unless immediately necessary for the preservation of life or the prevention of serious bodily harm,
(f) To refuse the off-label prescription of psychotropic drugs and at-risk polypharmacy,
(g) To have prescribing doctors disclose any financial ties they have to pharmaceutical companies in writing in an age appropriate manner.

Contact your Missouri state Representative and Senator, and let them know what you think about this. Such an amendment to the proposed legislation would certainly strengthen the rights of foster children and reduce the administration of psychiatric drugs, since they are all inherently damaging to young children and should not be held as standards of care.

For more information click here.

The First Line of Therapy

Dr. Hansa Bhargava, a practicing pediatrician and medical editor with Medscape, is starting to recognize that drugs should not be the first line of therapy for children with symptoms of difficult behavior.

While ADHD itself is a fake illness, the observed symptoms are real, and the root causes must be diagnosed, recognized, and treated for whatever they are.

Children are being diagnosed with symptoms of so-called ADHD at younger and younger ages. Instilling good behavior and lifestyle habits as they grow will help them improve as they move into adolescence and adulthood.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reported that almost 1 in 2 preschoolers with a “diagnosis” of ADHD get no behavioral therapy, but instead get drugs as the first form of “treatment.”

There is growing evidence that the first approach in addressing these symptoms should be nonpharmacological.

For example, the National Sleep Foundation reported that as many as 80% of teens do not get enough sleep. Sleep-deprived kids often lack focus and may have symptoms of hyperactivity, which can mistakenly be attributed to this fake disease. Dehydration may have effects on one’s ability to control one’s behavior. And exercise is well established as important for overall physical fitness, growth, and mood, but it turns out that it may be particularly helpful in kids with behavioral symptoms.

A “diagnosis” of ADHD is based solely on opinion, and should never be taken as a fact before non-psychiatric, clinical evidence determines what is actually medically the case.

What is ADHD then? In 1987, “Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder” (ADHD) was literally voted into existence by a show of hands of American Psychiatric Association members and included in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM). Within a year, 500,000 children in America alone were diagnosed with this. It is an excuse to sell drugs and make money.

ADHD actually represents the spontaneous behaviors of normal children. When these behaviors become age-inappropriate, excessive or disruptive, the potential causes are limitless, including: boredom, poor teaching, inconsistent discipline at home, reading difficulty, tiredness, street drugs, nutritional deficiency, toxic overload, and many kinds of underlying physical illness.

There is no valid ADHD test for children. There is no valid ADHD test for adults. ADHD in adults is just as bogus as ADHD in children.

The ADHD diagnosis does not identify a genuine biological or psychological disorder. The diagnosis is simply a list of behaviors that may appear disruptive or inappropriate.

Click here for more information.

Drugging Children in Missouri Foster Care

The high rates of psychotropic medication use in the Medicaid population, risks associated with these drugs, and research documenting inappropriate prescribing, have raised concerns, especially for children involved in the child welfare system.

Studies suggest that appropriate prescribing practices, that is, adhering to FDA-approved use and accepted clinical guidelines, may not always be followed for certain Medicaid populations such as the high-risk populations of children in foster care. In actual fact, multiple studies and reports have found that children in foster care are vulnerable to inappropriate or excessive drug use. Children in foster care are often prescribed more than one psychotropic drug at the same time. A review in Missouri once found some children in foster care prescribed five or more psychotropic drugs.

Missouri Foster Care serves individuals age 0 to 21; not all states provide care to age 21. In FY2014 Missouri extended Medicaid benefits up to age 26 for individuals who have aged out of foster care.

In Fiscal Year 2015, Department of Social Services MO Healthnet (Medicaid) spent $1,254,900,000 for pharmacy services for 883,672 people, approximately 60% of whom were children. There were an average of 13,033 children monthly in Foster Care (19,429 individuals for the year.) The total 2015 state population of children under 18 was 1,399,075.

(Data is primarily from the Missouri Department of Social Services and Child Division reports available on the state website dss.mo.gov, as well as various Medicaid-related publications, and sites such as the Medicaid Statistical Information System.)

Average number of MO Children in Foster Care per month by Fiscal Year:

FY Avg # of Children per Month Total Individuals per Year
2003 12,246
2004 11,634
2005 11,402
2006 10,904
2007 10,571
2008 9,760
2009 9,532
2010 9,785
2011 10,536 16,493
2012 11,059 17,160
2013 11,257 18,289
2014 12,104 18,290
2015 13,033 19,429

You can see that over the last four years, Missouri has been experiencing an increase in the Foster Care population, which in 2015 was the highest in the previous 12 years; indicating at the very least unmanageable caseloads.

The average age of a child in Missouri Foster Care is 10 years old, and spends an average of 24 months in foster care.

In 2014, for example, there were 7,259 Children entering or reentering state custody. There were 24,388 children, in or out of foster care, who were receiving public mental health services (meaning they were likely on one or more psychotropic drugs.)

For 2008, Medicaid Pharmacy Benefit statistics for Missouri from the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services show 122,274 children 5 years of age or younger; 121,095 ages 6 to 14; and 54,645 ages 15 to 20. This includes children in foster care. The top drug group for all these prescriptions in terms of cost was antipsychotics.

Missouri consistently ranks nationally in the bottom one-third of overall health status as compared to other states. Nationally, about 14 percent of Medicaid beneficiaries used a psychotropic medication during calendar year 2011. In 2011, Medicaid spent about $8 billion in fee for service for psychotropic medications—30 percent of the program’s total fee-for-service drug spending.

Some General Observations from the Data
1. Top costs are for ADHD drugs and Antipsychotics for all ages.
2. ADHD drug costs appear to be increasing year over year.
3. Babies less than a year old are more commonly given Barbiturates, one presumes as a remedy for insomnia. Barbiturates are highly dangerous because of the small difference between a normal dose and an overdose.
4. Total foster care drug costs have averaged roughly $16 Million per year, with a total for the five years 2010-2014 over $81 Million.

Drug Classes given to children in Missouri foster care (ask us for a copy of the full report):
ADHD
Antianxiety
AntidepressantAntipsychotic_Combo
Antidepressants_MAOIs
Antidepressants_SSRIsAndSimilar
Antidepressants_Tricyclics
Antipsychotics_FirstGeneration
Antipsychotics_SecondGeneration
Barbiturates
Bipolar Disorder
InsomniaNarcolepsySleepDisorders

 

Recommendations / Model Legislation
§ As an example, there are currently close to 63,000 children and youth in California’s Child Welfare System. Refer to this model legislation from California:
California Assembly Bill AB-1067
http://leginfo.legislature.ca.gov/faces/billNavClient.xhtml?bill_id=201520160AB1067
Approved by the Governor 09/30/16.
Requires the Department of Social Services (DSS) to convene a working group to develop standardized information about the rights of all minors and nonminors in foster care, and expands requirements regarding the distribution of information regarding these rights.

§ As another example, see this draft copy of suggested California legislation to expand the rights of children in foster care regarding the use of psychotropic drugs:
http://www.cchrstl.org/documents/Draft%20CA%20Foster%20Care%20Bill.pdf
A bill to amend the existing Foster Child Bill of Rights (WIC 16001.9) to strengthen the rights of foster children to participate in any decision to require mental health treatment and psychotropic medication. The state of California finds that Foster Children are subjected to excessive diagnosis and treatment by psychotropic medications, and hereby amends the Foster Child Bill of Rights to include the following additional protections for children under the care of Child Protective Services.
Section 16001.9 (a) 5 of the Welfare and Institutions Code is amended to read:
(5) (a) To be free of the administration of medication or chemical substances unless authorized by physician,
(b) To be informed of the risks and benefits of psychotropic medication in an age appropriate manner,
(c) To tell their doctor that they disagree with any recommendation to prescribe psychotropic medication,
(d) To go to the judge with an advocate of their choice and state that they object to any recommendation to prescribe psychotropic medication,
(e) To refuse the administration of psychotropic or other medication unless immediately necessary for the preservation of life or the prevention of serious bodily harm,
(f) To refuse the off-label prescription of psychotropic drugs and at-risk polypharmacy,
(g) To have prescribing doctors disclose any financial ties they have to pharmaceutical companies in writing in an age appropriate manner.

§ Go here to download more information about drugging foster care children:
http://www.cchrstl.org/documents/facts_about_foster_care_children.pdf