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Sharply different reactions to JAMA psychiatry & pharma commentary

The Journal of the American Medical Association this week published a commentary, “Psychiatrists’ Relationships With Pharmaceutical Companies: Part of the Problem or Part of the Solution?” by the chief of the National Institute of Mental Health.

On his blog, psychiatrist Daniel Carlat praises the “power (and courage) of the country’s chief psychiatrist calling his own profession out on the carpet for bad behavior.”

But on the Health Care Renewal blog, Dr. Bernard Carroll, past chair of the Duke psychiatry department, writes:

“With ludicrous optimism and a series of straw man discussions, Dr. Insel (NIMH chief) makes the case that things are not really as bad as they seemed to be or, if they were, then other specialty physicians were doing much the same things. Dr. Insel needs to recalibrate his ethical compass.

Why is an NIH Institute Director issuing this apologia for the corruption of academic psychiatry? Does he not have better things to do, such as ensuring that longstanding NIH regulations on conflict of interest are enforced?”

Read the entire blog posts cited above to get a fuller flavor of the dispute.

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Comments (4)

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Marilyn Mann

March 25, 2010 at 3:08 pm

Howard Brody also commented on this:


March 26, 2010 at 2:17 pm

Pristiq’s advertising is directly targeted at manipulating normal healthy women to want to be medicated. Women must stand up to big pharma’s bullying them to over-medicate with antidepressants washing out their emotions & personalities and interfering being mothers, sisters, brothers, daughters, partners and lovers.. Women are targeted for antidepressants by big Pharma in the same way that tobacco companies targeted us 70 years ago. Drug companies are so effective at selling unhappiness to women that women take more than twice as many antidepressants as men.Like effexor Wyeth/Pfizer plans on using modern marketing techniques and direct payments to doctors to have Pristiq over prescribed instead of used based on evidence based diagnosis.