Robert Whitaker’s latest interview on Madness Radio with Will Hall.
The description on Madness Radio’s website is this:
Has society’s embrace of psychiatric medications led to recovery — or chronic disability? What would honest medical policy and treatment standards be if they were free of pharmaceutical company corruption? Pulitzer Prize finalist Robert Whitaker, author of Mad In America: Bad Science, Bad Medicine, and the Enduring Mistreatment of the Mentally Ill, discusses medications as a failed paradigm of care, and imagines what a sane alternative would look like.
He emphasizes that outcomes for mental illness are getting WORSE now with all the medications that we are using. We are seeing people getting sicker and sicker, both physically and mentally as well as early death. His new book will show that our standard of care for “mental illness” has failed.
What we see is that research has not shown any biological disorder, we see normal function being messed with and finally we see poor long term outcomes.
In 1955 570,000 in mental hospitals…many were actually dementia. Only 360,000 were bipolar or schizophrenic.
In 1987 there were 1.3 million on SSDI and SSI due to disability and in 2006 3.75 million. It’s tripled in the time that these new fancy drugs have been used!!
There are similar horrendous trends happening with children.
In 2010 he will publish his second book on mental health in America. I can assure you it’s going to be an amazing book that documents the truth in spades.
Over the long term if people start taking these drugs chronicity is created and disability is too.
It’s important to listen to this because there are many subtleties that I’m not covering. This is not a blanket anti-drug perspective. It’s more nuanced than that. And it’s hard to get that across unless you listen to the interview and ultimately read his book when it comes out.
For a wonderful history of psychiatry read his Mad In America: Bad Science, Bad Medicine, and The Enduring Mistreatment of the Mentally Ill.