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Tuesday, July 14, 2015

Jake's Amendment






An amendment to to the Coroners Bill is being put forward in Ireland later this week on behalf of a Stephanie McGill Lynch who believes her 14 year-old son, Jake (pictured) took his own life as a result of induced psychosis caused by the controversial antidepressant Prozac.

Stephanie, who wrote a guest post on my blog back in May, is hoping that 'Jake's amendment', which she drafted, will give coroners the option of a returning a verdict of  'Iatrogenic suicide'  or 'medically induced' suicide. As it stands, Coroners can return an 'open verdict'. The verdict means that the jury confirms that the death is suspicious but is unable to reach any of the other verdicts open to them.

This amendment will, no doubt, face opposition from pharmaceutical companies, particularly those who market and manufacture antidepressants. No doubt too, leading psychiatrists will have something to say about the amendment, probably along the lines of "the amendment may stop patients taking their medication."

Um, yup, isn't that the whole point?

Pharmaceutical companies and psychiatrists work hand-in-hand and any attempt at undermining them is usually met with stiff opposition

I think this is a brave move and, if implemented, could release the ball and chain currently around the necks of Coroners. They, just like medicine regulators, have a duty to protect the public from unsafe drugs, they also have a duty to give the dead a voice in the hope that that 'voice' may save other lives.

My hat is off to Stephanie on this - it's a bold move and one that will cause eruptions within the field of the pro-antidepressant brigade.

The amendment is being presented to the Dáil, on behalf of Stephanie, by SinnFein's Padraig Mac Lochlainn.

Fingers crossed that common sense prevails.


Bob Fiddaman.







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