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Wednesday, May 04, 2011

Patrick McGorry - Torn Asunder Down Under

Is time catching up with Australian psychiatrist Patrick McGorry?


Talk about timing. No sooner had I blogged about Australian psychiatrist Patrick "DeLorean" McGorry, another gem of an article pops up on the Internet.

Meet Martin Whitely, a former school teacher turned politician, who, it seems, is not quite happy with the way Patrick McGorry seems to be running the whole mental health system in Australia.

Whitely, unlike Halifax, Nova Scotia politician Stan Kutcher, is opposed to McGorry's early intervention program and pre-drugging children so this blog post is not about another politician in cahoots with McGorry, in fact it's quite the opposite.

Whitely is the author of, 'Speed Up and Sit Still', a book that challenges the science, marketing and politics of Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder. [ADHD] He first became concerned about ADHD child drugging in the mid 1990s. His job back then as a teacher gave him the opportunity to witness the alarming number of boys in his class who were medicated for ADHD but were unnaturally quiet and compliant.

His campaigning started before he became a politician and more recently he has been questioning the ethics of former Australian of the year Patrick McGorry.

On May 4 Whitely posed the question on his website, "Is Patrick McGorry’s and the Independent Mental Health Reform Group’s $3.5b blueprint for Australian mental health the way forward, or a prescription for more ‘psychiatric disorders’, ‘off label’ prescribing and youth suicide?"

The article was sent to McGorry for his response, that response is now up on Whitely's page. It's interesting reading, particularly as McGorry has failed to answer some important questions put to him by Whitely.

In McGorry we have a believer in pre-drugging children before they fall ill, that's pretty much the nuts & bolts of it. The Aussie government are, it appears, in agreement with McGorry's time travelling program and earlier this month McGorry's HEADSPACE was given a pledge of $3AUS MILLION from the Australian government. The money will go toward 10 new sites for the Headspace youth mental health service, each receiving $AUS 300,00.

This is practically peanuts compared to what McGorry has asked for.

In December 2010 Australian Minister for Mental Health, Mark Butler, appointed Professors McGorry and Hickie as members of a Mental Health Expert Working Group. Shortly after being appointed McGorry and co established the Independent Mental Health Reform Group. Last month [March 2011] the same Independent Mental Health Reform Group released its blueprint for mental health.

The figure? A staggering $3.5 Billion Australian dollars!

With this in mind, Whitely posed some questions for McGorry to answer. To be honest I was surprised that McGorry even responded but fair dinkum, he did.

Whitely's questions, McGorry's right of reply and Whitely's last word can be read here. The correspondence is long so grab yourself a cup of tea, sit comfortable and don't touch that flux capacitor!

On a footnote, Whitely's article coincides with a paper published in the British Medical Journal [BMJ] yesterday. The author, Ray Moynihan, writes about the The Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders [DSM], in particular its conflict of interests and the way it defines "disease." You can read it here.

It's a cracking read and both Whitely's and Moynihan's work marry well. You should read them both.

For a concise background on Patrick McGorry read the following articles from CCHR:

The Brave New World of Pre-Drugging Kids: Patrick McGorry & Psychosis Risk Syndrome

Australian Psychiatrist Patrick McGorry Wants His Pre-Drugging Agenda to Go Global

If that isn't enough for you to digest, you can read this, "Psychiatrist Patrick McGorry Slams His Critics [Diddums]" - written by yours truly.



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