Missouri Settlement Changes Psychiatric Drug Use in Foster Kids

A class action federal lawsuit [Case No. 2:17-cv-04102-NKL] against the Missouri Department of Social Services alleging the overdrugging of foster children with harmful and addictive psychotropic drugs was given preliminary approval for settlement by U.S. District Court Judge Nanette Laughrey (Western District of Missouri) on Monday, July 15, 2019.

The case was first filed in June 2017 by national non-profit organizations Children’s Rights and the National Center for Youth Law (NCYL), the Saint Louis University School of Law Legal Clinics, and pro-bono counsel Morgan, Lewis & Bockius LLP.

The lawsuit claimed that children in Missouri foster care are at increased risk of being improperly or unnecessarily administered psychotropic drugs, leaving the children vulnerable to various serious adverse effects, including hallucinations, self-harm and suicidal thoughts.

Roughly 13,000 children are in Missouri’s foster care system. More than 30% of them are prescribed these harmful drugs, and 20% are taking two or more drugs at the same time. Medicaid pays for a majority of the healthcare services that children in foster care receive, including psychotropic drugs.

Most psychotropic drugs have not been FDA approved to treat children, who are at great risk of serious harm from these drugs because the drugs play Russian Roulette with neurotransmitters in the brain.

The settlement calls for multiple reforms, although without any of the defendants admitting any liability concerning any of the claims or allegations in the complaint. Objections, support, or comments by Class members or their legal representatives (or other interested parties) can be provided by October 23, 2019 per the “Notice of Proposed Class Action Settlement in M.B., et al. v. Tidball, et al.

The Missouri Department of Social Services, on behalf of the Missouri Children’s Division of the Department of Social Services, has contracted with the University of Missouri-Columbia to constitute a Center for Excellence within its Department of Psychiatry to undertake various responsibilities regarding this settlement, for roughly $3.8 million through July 31, 2021, although this contract is not specifically part of the settlement. While we applaud the Missouri government for taking action to address the abuse of foster children in their care, we must note that having psychiatrists oversee psychiatric abuse is like putting the fox in charge of the henhouse.

Specific commitments of the settlement include (these provisions are only briefly summarized here; refer to the actual settlement for full details):
1. Children’s Division (CD) shall maintain a full-time employee responsible for overseeing the implementation of policies and procedures concerning the use of psychotropic drugs for children in CD foster care.
2. Provisions for CD Case Management Staff Training.
3. Provisions for Resource Provider Training.
4. Provisions for training in the child welfare community serving children in Missouri.
5. CD shall maintain sufficient Case Management Staff to perform functions of the agreement.
6. Every child shall have a mental health assessment prior to being prescribed a psychotropic drug.
7. Every child prescribed a psychotropic drug shall have medical examinations.
8. Every child prescribed a psychotropic drug for ongoing use shall have monitoring appointments.
9. Every child prescribed a psychotropic drug shall receive concurrent nonpharmacological treatment.
10. Defendants are committed to developing and operating one or more statewide systems for maintaining medical records and/or medical information of each child in the custody of CD.
11. Defendants are committed to developing and operating one or more systems whereby pertinent medical records and/or medical information of the child will be made available to appropriate members of the child’s treatment team.
12. CD will implement and maintain a system for conducting secondary reviews of prescriptions of psychotropic drugs prescribed to children in the legal custody of CD.
13. CD shall maintain a policy governing informed consent and informed assent for psychotropic drugs, including a process for parental disagreement. The difference between consent and assent is basically that consent comes from the case manager and assent comes from the child.
14. Provisions for emergency administration of psychotropic drugs.
15.Defendants will appoint and maintain a psychotropic drug Advisory Committee to provide professional and technical consultation and policy advice.
16. Provisions for excessive dosage guidelines.

There are other provisions for data validation, enforcement, reporting, and exit criteria from the agreement. Refer to the actual agreement for these details.

Go here for more information about psychiatric abuse in the foster care system.

Psychiatric Hospitals With Safety Violations Still Get Accreditation

The Wall Street Journal reported December 26, 2018 that 141 psychiatric hospitals across the U.S. remained fully accredited despite serious safety violations between 2014 and 2015, including the death, abuse or sexual assault of patients.

A lot of money is at stake: Medicare payments to inpatient psychiatric facilities reached $4.5 billion in 2017, growing an average of 1% each year since 2006.

Evidence repeatedly shows that patients are at risk in for-profit psychiatric facilities that lack effective oversight.

The largest U.S. psychiatric hospital chain, owned by Universal Health Services (UHS) has approximately 200 behavioral facilities in the U.S. alone. As of September 2018, UHS had set aside $90 million in reserves to potentially settle a Federal Department of Justice (DOJ) investigation into its billing practices involving 30 behavioral facilities and UHS headquarters. UHS continues to come under scrutiny for patient abuse, yet is allowed to purchase or build more psychiatric hospitals.

Another major behavioral hospital chain is owned by Acadia Healthcare, which has 586 mental health and substance abuse facilities nationwide. Both these chains capture billions of dollars in Medicaid and Medicare funding in an overall $220 billion-a-year U.S. behavioral health industry.

The potential for fraud in these two chains alone could be upwards of $230 million to $460 million. Over the past decade, UHS has already accounted for about $37 million in False Claims Act settlements and fines.

Psychiatric Times estimates that between 10 and 20 percent of state mental health funds are lost to fraud, waste, and excess profits to for-profit managed care companies—representing $5 billion-$10 billion.

The National Health Care Anti-Fraud Association (NHCAA) says that individual victims of health care fraud are sadly easy to find. These are people who are exploited and subjected to unnecessary or unsafe medical procedures, or whose medical records are compromised or whose legitimate insurance information is used to submit falsified claims.

Many health care fraud investigators believe mental health caregivers, such as psychiatrists and psychologists, have the worst fraud record of all medical disciplines.

What is needed is legislation that provides not only more effective oversight but also stronger accountability measures: criminal and civil penalties, removal from Medicare and Medicaid programs and their funding, and hospital closure where systemic abuse is found.

Click here for more information about massive psychiatric fraud.

Over-Drugging Foster Care Children

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) Office of Inspector General (OIG) released their September, 2018 reportTreatment Planning and Medication Monitoring Were Lacking for Children in Foster Care Receiving Psychotropic Medication.

A previous 2015 OIG report found serious quality-of-care concerns in the treatment of children with psychotropic drugs. This year’s report follows up on that with a sample of 625 children in foster care from the 5 States that had the highest utilization of psychotropic medications in their foster care populations in FY 2013 — Iowa, Maine, New Hampshire, North Dakota, and Virginia.

Medicaid pays for a majority of the healthcare services that children in foster care receive, including psychotropic drugs. In 2013, the most recent year for which there was complete data available in the Medicaid Statistical Information System, state Medicaid programs paid approximately $366 million for psychotropic drugs for nearly 240,000 children in foster care up to age 21.

This table shows some of the data for these five states, plus Missouri for comparison, and the totals for all 50 states.

State (FY2013) Population of Children in Foster Care Number of Children in Foster Care Treated with Psychotropic Drugs Percentage of Children in Foster Care Treated with Psychotropic Drugs Total Medicaid fee-for-service Expenditures for Psychotropic Drugs for Children in Foster Care
Iowa 13,951 4,981 35.70% $7,135,849
Maine 3,527 1,155 32.70% $1,600,692
New Hampshire 2,614 944 36.10% $1,741,581
North Dakota 2,734 1,021 37.30% $1,184,934
Virginia 14,999 5,584 37.20% $11,959,404
Missouri 34,817 9,847 28.30% $26,130,684
Total All 50 States 1,073,340 238,465 22.20% $365,555,960

What OIG Found
In these five states, one in three children in foster care who were treated with psychotropic drugs did not receive treatment planning or drug monitoring as required by the states.

The HHS Administration for Children and Families (ACF) is responsible for awarding Federal funding to states’ child welfare programs and for overseeing those programs. Ostensibly they require each state to comply with approriate treatment planning and drug monitoring. Unfortunately, not only is this not consistently occurring, it is not consistently being done with the professional practice guidelines from psychiatric professional organizations. In other words, it isn’t really being professional or effective, to the detriment of many thousands of foster care children across the country.

OIG recognizes that these drugs can have serious adverse side effects, and the 34% of children who did not receive treatment planning or drug monitoring are liable to be the ones experiencing issues such as too many mind-altering drugs, incorrect dosages, incorrect durations, incorrect indications for use, or inappropriate treatments.

ACF complains that they have statutory and regulatory constraints that prevent them from fully implementing and reporting on treatment planning and drug monitoring. And the states have been getting away with lax treatment planning and drug monitoring because they can, putting foster care children at risk, while consuming nearly $366 million in taxpayer funds for harmful and addictive drugs that may be entirely inappropriate for many vulnerable children.

More than 30 percent of Missouri’s current foster children population 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. Foster children are drugged with these harmful psychotropics at 13 times the rate of children living with their parents.

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.

Medical Kidnapping

Whether under the care of Child Protective Services, Departments of Family and Child Services, or Youth Welfare Offices, foster children — often removed from family homes because of alleged abuse — are further abused when they are prescribed psychotropic (mind-altering) drugs. Already troubled over their circumstances, these children are drugged for emotional and behavioral issues, sometimes with tragic outcome.

The high rates of psychotropic drug 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.

Have you ever heard of Medical Kidnapping? It’s when the government removes a family member from their home for some kind of medical reason.

Some of the “medical” reasons given are: asking for a second opinion, disagreeing with a doctor, refusing to give or take a prescribed psychiatric drug, parents not vaccinating their kids, someone said there was some kind of medical abuse, someone said there was some kind of medical emergency.

Now there’s a web site for it: http://medicalkidnap.com/.

“Though much of the public may still believe that Child Protective Services must have a good reason whenever they take children away from their parents, the curtain is increasingly being pulled back to expose the ugly truth behind the facade. Children are seized from their families many times over false allegations and lies. Deception within social services is the norm, not the exception.”

Medical kidnapping of children may be far more prevalent than anyone has realized.

Children in foster care are three times more likely to be prescribed harmful and addictive psychiatric drugs, making them a large market for the psycho-pharmaceutical industry. Psychiatrists prescribed 93% of the psychotropic drugs dispensed to foster youths, according to a 2008 study.

It is legal in Missouri to conduct medical research on foster children, albeit with various forms and approvals.

“Just as social workers and family courts don’t require actual evidence to take children from their families, objective testing and evidence is not required for a psychiatrist to label someone with a mental illness – a label that can follow the child for years, or forever.”

Click here for more information about psychiatric drugging of foster children.

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.

Human Rights Concerns with the Helping Families in Mental Health Crisis Act of 2015

Human Rights Concerns with the Helping Families in Mental Health Crisis Act of 2015

Congressional Rep. Tim Murphy (R., PA) originally introduced the Helping Families in Mental Health Crisis Act (H.R.3717) in 2013. Not to be outdone by H.R.6 the 21st Century Cures Act, he has reintroduced it to this year’s Congress as H.R.2646 the Helping Families in Mental Health Crisis Act of 2015.

Rep. Murphy is a psychologist, and a staunch supporter of “mental health care” as defined by the psychiatric and psychological industries; not to mention the pharmaceutical and insurance industries.

Official Title of the Act: “To make available needed psychiatric, psychological, and supportive services for individuals with mental illness and families in mental health crisis, and for other purposes.”

The Act creates a new position in the Department of Health and Human Services – an official to be known as the Assistant Secretary for Mental Health and Substance Use Disorders. (As if we need another bureaucracy in the psych industry.)

The Act creates more funding for psych-based “treatments.”

The Act expands the bureaucracy surrounding “parity in mental health and substance use disorder benefits” under Medicare and Medicaid.

The Act provides for grants in early childhood intervention and treatment programs, and specialized preschool and elementary school programs.

The Act provides for grants in “Assisted Outpatient Treatment” programs.

The Act requires states to have a law that enforces court-ordered involuntary mental health treatment for the “mentally disabled” if the state want to receive certain federal funding.

The Act expands mental health training for primary care physicians.

This isn’t even half of the proposed legislation.

The Act spends lots more money on “suicide prevention” all up and down the entire educational chain, from elementary school through college.

The Act establishes an entirely new bureaucracy called the “Interagency Serious Mental Illness Coordinating Committee.”

Of course, the Act also expands the availability of and insurance coverage for psychiatric prescription drugs, as well as lifting limits on Medicare payments for inpatient psychiatric hospital services.

The Act expands the Community Mental Health Care programs.

The Act increases funding for the National Institute of Mental Health.

And even that’s not all the Act does to strengthen the already fraudulent and abusive psychiatric mental health industry.

CCHR Supporters should really consider contacting their Congressmen to express their opinions about this affront to rationality.

Let us know when you contact your Congressmen about this, and any response you may receive.

Feds Pay for Drug Fraud

Feds Pay for Drug Fraud

92 Percent of Foster Care, Poor Kids Prescribed Antipsychotics Get Them for Unaccepted Uses
This Huffington Post article on April 30, 2015 exposes the fact that poor and foster care kids covered by Medicaid are being prescribed too many dangerous antipsychotic drugs at young ages for far too long — mostly without any medical justification at all.
“92 percent of all kids on Medicaid receiving antipsychotics don’t have any of the limited ‘medically accepted pediatric conditions’ supposedly justifying their use. These ‘accepted conditions’ include the authority to use antipsychotics even for autistic children as young as 5 for such dubious FDA-approved conditions as ‘irritability.'”

“Medicaid spends about $3.5 billion a year on antipsychotics for all ages, largely for unaccepted uses, with nearly 2 million kids prescribed them. Nationally, about 12 percent of all the nation’s 500,000 foster care children have received Medicaid-paid antipsychotics at some point, often because they haven’t been offered proven, “trauma-informed” intensive therapies, according to Kamala Allen, director of Child Health Quality for the Center for Health Care Strategies.”

“… it shouldn’t be surprising to learn that federal officials aren’t too keen on enforcing drugging protections for either nursing home residents (whose meds are usually paid by Medicare) or children on Medicaid. ‘The federal government has done absolutely nothing of significance to rein in overprescribing,’ says Bill Grimm, a senior counsel with the San Francisco-based National Center for Youth Law (NYCL) that has launched a PsychDrugs Action Campaign, now focused primarily on pending reform bills in the California legislature.”

“… just two months ago, a Philadelphia jury found that Janssen hid the breast-growth dangers of the drug Risperdal and owed $2.5 million to a 20-year-old autistic man who developed size 46 DD breasts as a teenager. ‘This was the first case related to the condition called gynecomastia that went to a jury, but thousands more lawsuits are lined up in Philadelphia, California, Missouri, and other locations,’ The Philadelphia Inquirer reported.”

“… what’s especially absurd … is the notion that federal officials think they’re not allowed to suggest to state Medicaid authorities to stop paying for the unaccepted uses of these and other drugs.”

“As Dr. David Rubin, the director of the Policy Lab at the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia, told Mental Health Weekly, ‘The medications are being used particularly for disruptive behavior and to control the children.’ Yet nearly half of all kids getting the drugs aren’t getting other behavioral health services such as therapy, according to research by the Center for Health Care Strategies.”

“A shocking five-part series by The San Jose Mercury News, published last year, highlighted dangerous overprescribing that showed that thousands of foster care kids over a decade — nearly one in four foster teens — had been essentially ‘chemically restrained’ for their behavior with antipsychotics drugs that left many drooling, lethargic and obese.”

“Edward Opton, an attorney with the National Center for Youth Law’s PsychDrugs Action Campaign, has underscored why foster care kids are especially vulnerable. Even though they make up just 3 percent of all Medicaid children, they account for roughly 30 percent of all Medicaid behavioral spending for kids: ‘Foster children are a lucrative market for psychotropic drug sales. Unlike adults, they can’t say, “No, I won’t take any more of that drug,”‘ he wrote in a recent column on the Mad in America website.”

You should read the full Huffington Post article, it is most illuminating.

You should also contact your local, state and federal officials and ask them why this Medicaid fraud persists.

The Cloward-Piven Strategy

The Cloward-Piven Strategy

The Cloward–Piven strategy is a political strategy outlined in 1966 by American sociologists and political activists Richard Cloward and Frances Fox Piven that called for overloading the U.S. public welfare system in order to precipitate a crisis that would lead to a replacement of the welfare system with a national system of a guaranteed annual income and thus “an end to poverty.”

[Cloward, Richard; Piven, Frances (May 2, 1966). “The Weight of the Poor: A Strategy to End Poverty”. (Originally published in The Nation)]

You heard that right. The idea is to drastically increase the ranks of people on government welfare, crash the welfare system and force it to be replaced by — another government welfare system for everyone.

As Cloward and Piven put it, the ultimate objective of this strategy is to wipe out poverty by establishing a guaranteed annual income. In order to precipitate this crisis, the poor must obtain more and more welfare benefits until the system is overloaded.

This is just another suppressive way of redistributing income through the federal government.

Another part of the strategy is that welfare advocacy “must be supplemented by organized demonstrations to create a climate of militancy that will overcome the invidious and immobilizing attitudes which many potential recipients hold toward being ‘on welfare.'”

In other words, let’s create a dangerous environment so that people lose their natural inclination to be self-sufficient and hook them on government welfare.

“To generate an expressly political movement, cadres of aggressive organizers would have to come from the civil rights movement and the churches, …” Are you starting to see a pattern here with recent riots and demonstrations, largely fomented by people sent in from outside the affected community?

They go on to say, “By crisis, we mean a publicly visible disruption in some institutional sphere. Crisis can occur spontaneously (e.g., riots) or as the intended result of tactics of demonstration and protest which either generate institutional disruption or bring unrecognized disruption to public attention.”

Are you getting it yet? Do we really need to name Ferguson? Roughly a quarter of those rioters arrested were not residents of Missouri. One report has it that, “The real story out of Ferguson is that a national network of agitators is ready, on a moment’s notice, to arrive on the scene to cause violence and mayhem.”

Do you know how much “mental health care” and psychiatric drugs are a part of this plot, given that these drugs incite violence and aggression as a “side effect?” Hint — the Missouri Department of Mental Health’s budget is over $1.8 billion per year. Medicaid claims for psychotropic drugs are well over 60 million per year, over 2 million claims per year in Missouri; Medicaid payments for psychotropic drugs are over $6 billion per year, and over $174 million per year in Missouri.

Missouri Medicaid (called MO HealthNet) covers 1 out of every 7 Missourians and 38% of Missouri’s children. Roughly 30% of Missouri’s total annual budget goes to Medicaid; but this only covers 50% of Medicaid spending — the other 50% comes from the federal government. 15% of the Medicaid budget goes to pharmacy services; 15% goes to mental health services. And of course the Affordable Care Act allows for the expansion of eligibility for Medicaid — a key part of Cloward-Piven, expanding access to welfare; although at this time Missouri has not yet expanded MO HealthNet eligibility.

Psychotropic drugs represent roughly 30% of all pharmaceutical spending, and the cost appears to increase roughly 20% per year.

The implementation of the Affordable Care Act is expected to add 2.7 percent, or $7.3 billion, to the level of Mental Health and Substance Abuse spending in 2020, as an expected 25 million people who were previously uninsured gain health insurance coverage.

Well, as we looked back on these statistics, we nearly fell off of our soapbox in shock. What to do? Contact your local, state and federal officials and express your alarm. Write a Letter to the Editor. Contact your employer, your school, your church, your family, friends, and associates. Show them a CCHR DVD documentary (we’ll mail you one if you promise to show it around.) Forward this newsletter and suggest they subscribe. Vote!

Find Out! Fight Back!

Psychiatric Medicaid Fraud

Psychiatric Medicaid Fraud

In an August 28, 2013 decision by the United States Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit, the appeals judge held that psychiatrists commit Medicaid fraud when they submit Medicaid claims for off-label prescriptions for psychiatric drugs to children for uses that are not approved by the FDA or supported by certain specific pharmaceutical references.

In the words of the court, “…the federal government generally will not pay for medications prescribed for purposes not approved by the FDA or ‘supported’ by any of several pharmaceutical reference books (called ‘compendia’). …Medicaid can only provide reimbursement for ‘covered outpatient drugs.’ …Covered drugs do not include any drugs ‘used for a medical indication which is not a medically accepted indication.’ …’medically accepted indication’ is a statutorily defined term that refers to a prescription purpose approved by the Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act…or ‘supported by’…the American Hospital Formulary Service Drug Information, the United States Pharmacopeia Drug Information…and the DRUGDEX Information System.”

Basically, the appeals court reinforced the common-sense position that Medicaid fraud occurs when a doctor submits a Medicaid claim for a prescription written for off-label use, as many psychiatric drugs are prescribed.

The original lawsuit, ex rel Watson v. King-Vassel, was brought under PsychRights’ Medicaid Fraud Initiative Against Psychiatric Drugging of Children & Youth by Dr. Toby Watson, a Wisconsin psychologist, to support the Law Project for Psychiatric Rights‘ effort to try and stop the tremendous harm caused by off-label psychiatric drug prescriptions to poor children on Medicaid for uses that have no recognized scientific support.

Starting on January 1, 2014, all low-income, non-elderly and non-disabled individuals will be eligible for Medicaid, courtesy of the Affordable Care Act. The Federal Government will provide 100% of the cost of newly eligible people between 2014 and 2016, 95% of the costs in 2017, 94% of the costs in 2018, 93% of the costs in 2019, and 90 percent matching for subsequent years. The bottom line — expanding Medicaid in this manner will also expand Medicaid fraud. Ensuring that psychiatric drugs are available for all citizens, access to Community Mental Health Centers is being emphasized.

Need we say that all psychiatric drugs are harmful? Find out why!

Report Medicaid fraud in Missouri to Missouri Medicaid Fraud & Compliance.

U.S. Probes Psych Drugs on Kids

U.S. Probes Psych Drugs on Kids

The Wall Street Journal (WSJ) carried this report August 11, “U.S. Probes Use of Antipsychotic Drugs on Children,” sub-titled “Federal health officials are reviewing antipsychotic drug use on children in the Medicaid system.”

Concerned that psych drugs are being over-prescribed to very young children, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) is reviewing antipsychotic use in the Medicaid system for children under 18 years old. These drugs include Abilify, which is widely prescribed to children for a range of behavioral symptoms. Other drugs in this category include Risperdal, Seroquel, and Zyprexa.

The DHHS has this to say specifically about this review: “We will determine the extent to which children ages 18 and younger had Medicaid claims for atypical antipsychotic drugs during the selected timeframe. On the basis of medical record reviews, we will also determine the extent to which the atypical antipsychotic drug claims were for off-label uses and for indications not listed in one or more of the approved drug compendia.”

Quotes from the WSJ article: “Medicaid spends more on antipsychotics than on any other class of drugs. Abilify, made by Otsuka Pharmaceutical Co., appears on lists of the top 10 drugs paid for by Medicaid in various states.”

“The number of people under age 20 receiving Medicaid-funded prescriptions for antipsychotic drugs tripled between 1999 and 2008.”

“Children on Medicaid are prescribed antipsychotics at four times the rate of privately insured children.”

“Of particular concern is use of the drugs on foster children in the Medicaid system.”

Contact Daniel R. Levinson, Inspector General, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, at dan.levinson@oig.hhs.gov, and let him know what you think about the psychiatric drugging of children with harmful and addictive antipsychotics.

Abilify and other antipsychotic drugs have caused a potentially fatal condition called neuroleptic malignant syndrome. Patients who develop this may have high fevers, muscle rigidity, altered mental status, irregular pulse or blood pressure, rapid heart rate, excessive sweating, and heart arrhythmias (irregularities). Body temperature regulation—disruption of the body’s ability to reduce core body temperature—has been attributed to antipsychotic agents such as Abilify.

According to the U.S. consumer advocacy group Public Citizen after reviewing information about clinical trials of Abilify, “…nothing in these five trials can lead one to believe that aripiprazole (Abilify) is a meaningful advancement in the treatment of schizophrenia.”

Of course, we recognize that the real problem is that psychiatrists fraudulently diagnose life’s problems as an “illness”, and stigmatize unwanted behavior 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.

It is vital that you, your family, your friends and associates, watch the video documentary “Making A Killing — The Untold Story of Psychotropic Drugging”. Containing more than 175 interviews with lawyers, mental health experts, the families of psychiatric abuse victims and the survivors themselves. This riveting documentary rips the mask off psychotropic drugging and exposes a brutal but well-entrenched money-making machine. The facts are hard to believe, but fatal to ignore. Watch the video online here. Forward this newsletter to everyone you know and recommend that they watch this video.