Wednesday, November 22, 2006

TeenScreen - Pharmaceutical/Psychiatric Fraud

Updated: November 21, 2006
TeenScreen is a very controversial so-called "diagnostic psychiatric service" aka suicide survey; done on children who are then referred to psychiatric treatment. The evidence suggests that the objective of the psychiatrists who designed TeenScreen is to place children so selected on psychotropic drugs.
"It's just a way to put more people on prescription drugs," said Marcia Angell, a medical ethics lecturer at Harvard Medical School and author of "The Truth About Drug Companies." She said such programs will boost the sale of antidepressants even after the FDA in September ordered a "black box" label warning that the pills might spur suicidal thoughts or actions in minors. (The New York Post, December 5, 2004)TeenScreen is based on the thoroughly discredited "Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders".

Procedure on Young Children
Step One
TeenScreen lures kids as young as 9 years old into doing the suicide survey by offering them free movie passes, food coupons, "I completed TeenScreen" stress balls and pizza parties, if they consent to the procedure.
One tactic TeenScreen officials use is to sell the child on the suicide survey first and after they have the child's agreement, they later contact parents. TeenScreen Project Coordinator, Kathleen Cigich, was quoted as saying: "We found early on, though, that sending out letters directly to parents is prohibitively time consuming and gets a low response rate. We thought, why not go to students themselves and offer a $5 video store coupon to anyone who brings back a parental consent form within a two-day turnaround period. It works. Our response rate is extremely high."TeenScreen also utilizes a "passive consent" form which requires no written parental approval. The passive consent form is sent home to parents and if they don't return it TeenScreen considers that the parents approve. TeenScreen officials favor passive consent because they say it boosts their chances of screening kids to 95% as opposed to the written parental consent technique. What if the child forgets to bring the consent form home? What happens if the parent is too busy to refuse in writing? They've consented in the eyes of TeenScreen personnel.
Step Two
The youngster is sat down and asked introverting questions such as:
Has there been a time when nothing was fun for you and you just weren't interested in anything?
Has there been a time when you felt you couldn't do anything well or that you weren't as good-looking or as smart as other people?
How often did your parents get annoyed or upset with you because of the way you were feeling or acting?
Have you often felt very nervous when you've had to do things in front of people?
Have you often worried a lot before you were going to play a sport or game or do some other activity?
Have you tried to kill yourself in the last year?
Are you still thinking of killing yourself?
Have you thought seriously about killing yourself?
Have you often thought about killing yourself??
Have you ever tried to kill yourself?
Step Three
Based on the answers the child gives to the above questions he is then shuffled off to a "clinician", who ponders the bogus label to use. Social Phobia? Panic Disorder? Anxiety? Obsessive Compulsive Disorder?Active Suicide Ideation?Passive Suicide Ideation?You can find the checklist used to label the child here: labeling checklist
IMPORTANT NOTE TO PARENTS: Parents are being mislead by a multi billion-dollar a year child drugging industry that a diagnoses of "mental disorder" (ADHD, Bi-Polar, Social Anxiety Disorder) are medical diseases or illnesses. This is a fraud. No child has a brain scan, blood test, X-Ray or any evidence of physical abnormality to verify they are "ill" or "diseased."
Yet psychiatrists continue to pound the public with misleading and fraudulent statements that these so called mental disorders are biochemical or neurological conditions. That is false. They are simply a list of behaviors that psychiatrists vote into existence and insert into their billing bible, the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders.
This has led to over 8 million children in the U.S. taking mind-altering psychiatric drugs.
The Diagnostic and Statistical Manual for Mental Disorders, 4th Edition (DSM-IV), published by the American Psychiatric Association (APA), is psychiatry's billing bible of "disorders" from which psychiatric screening, diagnoses and their treatment are derived. The current edition lists 374 psychiatric conditions that have been identified as mental disorders.Yet, the disorders contained in the DSM-IV are arrived at by consensus, not by scientific criteria.
There are no blood tests, brain scans, X-Rays, MRIs or "chemical imbalance" tests that can scientifically validate any mental "disorder" as a disease or illness.
Canadian psychologist Tana Dineen reports, "Unlike medical diagnoses that convey a probable cause, appropriate treatment and likely prognosis, the disorders listed in DSM-IV are terms arrived at through peer consensus"- literally, a vote by APA committee members.
Step Four
The "clinician" summarizes his report and comes up with an "impairment score".
Step Five
Based on how the child answered the "suicide survey", and which label the clinician conjured up and how the child did on his "impairment score" the child is then sent off for "treatment".
What treatment? Drugs. A survey of recently trained child psychiatrists found the treatment for 9 out of 10 children consisted of drugging. (Journal of the American Academy of Child Adolescent Psychiatry 2002).
The "treatment" used on children with these bogus labels can be found here: MedicationGuidelines". Treatment" is the long term goal for TeenScreen according to their director, Laurie Flynn.
What does the Food and Drug Administration say about these drugs? See here: Black BoxWarning.
There is no Suicide Epidemic Child Suicides are Rare
Protection of Pupil Rights AmendmentThe PPRA is intended to protect the rights of parents and students in two ways. It seeks to ensure that schools make psychological surveys such as TeenScreen available for inspection by parents and seeks to ensure that schools obtain written parental consent.

Origin of TeenScreen? A drug company paid psychiatrist, David Shaffer. Shaffer attempted to block negative British findings. In December of 2003 British drug regulators recommended against the use of antidepressants in the treatment of depressed children under 18 because some of the drugs had been linked to suicidal thoughts and self-harm. According to a December 11, 2003, New York Times article, Shaffer tried to block the agencies effort to warn parents and protect children. The newspaper reports that Shaffer, at the request of a maker of psychotropic drugs, sent a letter to the British drug agency saying that there was insufficient data to restrict the use of the drugs in adolescents.

Foster Care report warns of adverse side effects of drugs on children A report entitled "Psychotropic Drug Use in Foster Care" by the Florida Statewide Advocacy Council, discovered that of the 1,180 children reviewed 652 were on one or more psychotropic drugs. The report warned of the side effects of these drugs including suicidal tendencies. The report concluded that unnecessary dispensing of psychotropic drugs remains a threat to the children. They recommended that their findings be incorporated into an agenda in order to preserve and protect the health, safety, welfare and rights of children.

Pharmaceutical Industry Front GroupTeenScreen refuses to divulge the source of their funding. Their website says they are funded by private family foundations, corporations and individuals without naming them. One corner of the Internet did give a clue to their funding: A large pharmaceutical company funded the TeenScreen program in Tennessee. (See page 4, left, mid-page).According to their 10 year strategy, TeenScreen wants to make the suicide survey available to all American children. Their long term goal is psychiatric "treatment" of our children.Since 1991, the Division of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry has invested nearly $19 million in the "research" and development of the TeenScreen program. Who will reap the returns?TeenScreen says that 24% of the kids that are referred after screening are drugged. That percentage may be much higher. No wonder drug companies are tripping over themselves wanting to sponsor Screening. In Colorado over 350 youths were suicide screened using TeenScreen's survey. They found that over 50% were at risk of suicide and 71% screened positive for psychiatric disorders at a youth homeless shelter. That's not science! That's a dream come true for pharmaceutical company marketing types and bean counters.
No Child Left Unmedicated
Grateful acknowledgement is made to Phyllis Schlafly for permission to reproduce the following 2 paragraphs from her article No Child Left Unmedicated, March 1, 2005. Phyllis is a columnist, commentator, author, and founder of the Eagle Forum.Parental rights are unclear or nonexistent under these mental health screening programs. What are the rights of youth and parents to refuse or opt out of such screening? Will they face coercion and threats of removal from school, or child neglect charges, if they refuse privacy-invading interrogations or unproved medications? How will a child remove a stigmatizing label from his records?A pilot project for screening students, called TeenScreen, resulted in one-third of the subjects being flagged as "positive" for mental health problems. Half of those were turned over for mental health treatment. If that is a preview of what would happen when 52 million public school students are screened, it would mean hanging a libelous label on 17 million American children and forcibly putting 8 million children into the hands of the psychiatric/pharmaceutical industry.

Stop TeenScreen's Unscientific and Experimental "Mental Health Screening" of American School ChildrenSign this Petition

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