“Dominated by people against psychiatric medication”

The Minutes of the Psychopharmacology Committee of the Royal College of Psychiatrists provide some insight into high-level decision making on the education of psychiatrists and their approach to prescribing.

The Minutes for the above meeting are worth reading in full. They outline the steadfast alliance between the Royal College of Psychiatrists and the British Association for Psychopharmacology (BAP) in providing continuing medical education. The Minutes outline communications with the President on this. The Minutes also state that the “Psychopharmacology Committee and the BAP usually jointly organised 6 or 7 sessions at the International Congress and it was important that this continues.”

I have previously put together the available declarations of competing financial interests for the 2017 International Congress.

I have previously put together British Association for Psychopharmacology (BAP) declarations of competing financial interests (a lengthy document).

Item 7.3 on the Minutes relates to the forthcoming APPG Prescribed Medicines Review.

It is disappointing to find that the Royal College of Psychiatrists use the term “addiction” whereas the review is to consider the issue of dependence and withdrawal from prescribed medications.

The outgoing Chair of the Psychopharmacology Committee, Professor Allan Young, seems to have a predetermined view that all those who may have had less than positive experiences of prescribed medications (or advocates for those who have had such experiences) are “against psychiatric medications”.  As Chair he also expresses concern about the “dominance” of these “people”. It would seem that  a similar charge could be made about the “dominance” of competing financial interests in a significant number of the members of the influential committee that he chairs.

 

 

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