Archive for the ‘Psychiatric Drugs’ Category

Tonight on T.S. Radio: Death By Medical Neglect – Why My Mother Died

November 10, 2013

Our guest this evening will be discussing the medical negligence, misadministration of medical procedures including dialysis, and the inability of staff to concern themselves with the care and attention she should have recieved St. John Macomb hospital.

As a result of dialysis supplies being unavailable routinely at St John’s Macomb Hospital, Nancy, who was trained to give her mother dialysis treatments, was forced to supply the necessary items herself.

On the evening of March 6th, I received a call from my Mothers roommate telling me that the nurse could not figure out how to do the dialysis and when my Mother asked her to call me, the nurse told her no. I had the roommate put the nurse on the phone and I told her if you don,t unhook her she could get infected, she was hooked up for 45 minutes, when it should have taken only 20 minutes. She told me she was not risking her job and was keeping my Mother hooked up until the Doctor called.

” I had one nurse write in the chart what had happened, so it would not happen again. I watched the nurse write it and put it with the records.”

My mother had developed peritonitis and they started her on antibiotics…they said.  But the nurse had lied, they were giving her Dilaudid every 2 hours until 3:00. After 6 hours peritonitis is deadly.  They were also administering HALDOL……not approved for use on the elderly.

They have on the records they had given her the antibiotic but I don’t know if she actually ever got it.

She passed away on March 12, 2010. I knew they had done something to her, when a women came up to my sister and I and told us that my Mother had been septic for days and not one person told us. When we recieved the medical records after her death, Dr. Kinner wrote in things that never happened.

There is much more to this story. Please tune in and please call in with questions or comments.

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Prescriber Checkup: Lifting the veil on dangerous prescribing

September 22, 2013

Federal officials were skeptical two years ago when ProPublica asked them to release a database of prescriptions written in Medicare’s landmark drug plan, known as Part D.

The data details the prescribing habits of more than 1 million doctors and other health professionals who treat Medicare patients. The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services had never allowed any outsider, let alone journalists, to have access to such records, which include identity codes for individual providers.

In the months that followed, ProPublica reporters argued that freeing this data could help patients assess the prescribing patterns of their health providers. The reporters pointed out that the stringent laws on the confidentiality of medical records were written to protect the privacy of patients, not doctors.

After months of high-level deliberation, CMS, to its credit, agreed to release the records — and to unveil one of medicine’s biggest secrets.

In examining the data, our reporters found powerful indications that Medicare has not done all it could to oversee its drug plan.

Some of our nation’s most vulnerable citizens rely on this program — the elderly and disabled. We found that some doctors were prescribing antipsychotic drugs to large numbers of seniors — an age group for which such medicines are particularly hazardous. Others were writing unusually high numbers of prescriptions for painkillers and other dangerous drugs. Reporters systematically examined these cases, interviewing the doctors about their prescribing decisions. In some cases, they could explain their conduct. In others, they could not.

They all had one thing in common: None of the doctors whose prescribing habits stood out in our analysis had ever been questioned by Medicare officials. Government overseers, our reporters found, didn’t consider it their job to examine these patterns or act upon them.

Full Article and Source:
Prescriber Checkup: Lifting the veil on dangerous prescribing

Medication May Cause Elderly to Become Frail

August 17, 2013

The cocktail of drugs commonly prescribed to older people could be hastening their ageing, according to experts who say despite the risks of over-medication the problem is getting worse.
An analysis of patients in one hospital has found more than 60 per cent were being prescribed potentially dangerous medications.

There is [also] the potential for battery or medical negligence cases to be brought.

Full Article and Source:
Medication May Cause Elderly to Become Frail

Dementia is the Highest Costing Disease – and Rising

April 13, 2013

A report in the latest issue of the New England Journal of Medicine says the U.S. spends more on treating dementia than any other disease including cancer and heart disease.
Annual spending already tops $100 billion for direct treatment; tack on $50-100 billion for informal care like the cost of leaving your job to care for a parent. That works out to $50,000 per person. And those costs are expected to double by 2040.
Dementia carves away the ability of people to care for themselves. Rand economist Michael Hurd, who authored the study, says it’s no mystery why we spend more treating this disease than any other.

“The big cost is the cost for nursing homes, and nursing homes cost a lot,” says Hurd, who adds that nursing homes and in-home care makes up at least 75 percent of all spending.

About 4 million Americans suffer from some form of dementia today. By 2040, that number is expected to reach 9 million.

Full Article and Source:
Dementia is Highest Cost Disease and Rising


April 11, 2013

Millions of Americans place their loved ones in nursing homes every year with the belief that their parents and grandparents will be cared for at all times. Unfortunately, with one out of every three nursing homes cited for abuse across the country, nursing home abuse is a very real problem in the United States. From dehydration and malnutrition to mental and sexual abuse, there are a variety of ways that residents can be mistreated in a nursing home facility. One common way many nursing home or assisted living facility residents can suffer is through overmedication.

One of the most important parts of nursing home care is ensuring nursing home residents are receiving the proper amount of medication at all times. And with the average nursing home resident taking seven to eight different medications a month, this can be a very involved process. Even with federal regulations in place to ensure nursing homes have a system to provide residents with the appropriate amount of medication according to their doctor or pharmacist’s orders, many residents suffer from overmedication every year.

In 2010, statistics from the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) reported that over 17 percent of all nursing home patients were receiving antipsychotic medications that exceeded the recommended levels on a daily basis. This number has reportedly been as high as 25 percent in the state of California and even a staggering 71 percent in the state of Florida. Even more alarming statistics suggest that close to 40 percent of nursing home residents were given antipsychotic drugs in 2010 even though they were not diagnosed with psychosis.

Unfortunately, a large number of nursing home abuse cases go unreported.
The new trend of using psychoactive medication to control nursing home residents is extremely dangerous. The Food and Drug Administration estimates roughly 15,000 nursing home residents die every year from unprescribed anti-psychotics.

Full Article and Source:
How to Spot Overmedication in Nursing Homes

Making Grief a Mental Disorder

February 15, 2013

After the American Psychiatric Association (APA) approved the latest version of its diagnostic bible, the DSM-5, psychiatrist Allen Frances, the former chair of the DSM-4 taskforce and currently professor emeritus at Duke, announced, “This is the saddest moment in my 45-year career of practicing, studying and teaching psychiatry” (“ A Tense Compromise on Defining Disorders”).

On Jan. 7, 2013 in “Last Plea to DSM-5:  Save Grief From the Drug Companies,”  Frances wrote, “Making grief a mental disorder will be a bonanza for drug companies, but a disaster for grievers. The decision is also self-destructive for DSM-5 and further undermines the credibility of the APA. Psychiatry should not be mislabeling the normal.”

In the DSM-4, which Frances helped create, there had been a so-called “bereavement exclusion,” which stated that grieving the loss of a loved one, even when accompanied by symptoms of depression, should not be considered the psychiatric disorder of depression. Prior to the DSM-5, the APA had acknowledged that to have symptoms of depression while grieving the loss of a loved one is normal and not a disease. Come this spring, normal human grief accompanied by depression symptoms will be a mental disorder. Psychiatry’s official diagnostic battle is over. Mental illness gatekeepers such as Frances who are concerned about further undermining the credibility of the APA have lost, and mental illness expansionists —psychiatry’s “neocons”— have won.

Full Article and Source:
Why Newest Psychiatric Diagnostic Bible Will Boon Big Pharma

Psychiatric drugs tied to falls in the elderly

February 10, 2013

NEW YORK (Reuters Health) – Seniors taking psychiatric drugs may be at extra high risk for falling, new Dutch research suggests.

Of about 400 elderly people in the study, those who took medications including antidepressants and antipsychotics were twice as likely to report having fallen three or more times in the previous year, researchers found.

The new study can’t prove that falls were due to the effects of the drugs, themselves, and not to seniors’ underlying medical conditions, for example.

But a number of side effects of psychiatric drugs – from changes in thinking and attention to drops in blood pressure – could put elderly people at greater risk for falls, according to Dr. Allen Huang, head of geriatrics at The Ottawa Hospital and the University of Ottawa in Ontario, Canada.

“In my clinical observation, it’s usually the first two weeks when people start something new that bad things happen,” said Huang, who has studied psychiatric drugs in older adults but wasn’t involved in the new research.

Seniors are especially vulnerable to falls, which at their worst can cause hip fractures, head injuries or death.

Full Article & Source:
Psychiatric drugs tied to falls in the elderly

Recommended Website: The National Consumer Voice for Quality Long-Term Care

January 18, 2013

The Consumer Voice is actively fighting to end the misuse of antipsychotic drugs as chemical restraints.

Our campaign seeks to address this problem through:

• Legislation
 •Regulation and Guidance

Residents of long-term care facilities are increasingly being placed on antipsychotic medications despite having no proper diagnosis to warrant their use. Twenty-six percent (26%) of all nursing home residents are given antipsychotic medications. Use is even higher (nearly 40%) among residents with dementia – the very individuals that the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) warns are at serious risk of medical complications and death from taking antipsychotics. In addition, far too often the dangers of these medications are not even discussed with residents and their families and are administered without consent.


Elder Abuse Leads to Jail for Nursing Director

January 17, 2013

California’s Attorney General announced that the former director of nursing at a hospital in the Kern Valley Healthcare District was sentenced to three years in state prison for the “convenience drugging” of elderly patients, including one who ended up dying.

Gwen D. Hughes, the former nursing director, was charged with the deaths of three patients in the original lawsuit. She pled no contest to a single felony count of elder abuse last October, with a special allegation that the abuse resulted in the death of a patient, according to a press release from the California Department of Justice.

The state’s Department of Justice alleges that Hughes ordered psychotropic medication — without any therapeutic reasons — for 23 elderly patients of the hospital’s skilled nursing facility. The drugs were given to keep quiet patients who were noisy, prone to wandering, or were argumentative.
The patients who were given the medication were mostly Alzheimer’s patients or suffering from dementia.

Hughes allegedly directed the hospital’s director of pharmacy to write doctor’s orders for the unnecessary psychotropic medications, according to the California Justice Department. The investigation by the state found that the drugs hastened the deaths of three patients and that all the patients who were inappropriately medicated suffered adverse physical reactions.

The Kern Valley case represents a rare instance in which a medical professional faced criminal charges and was sentenced under elder abuse laws for the illegal chemical restraint of patients.

Full Article and Source:
Sokolove Law:  Elder Abuse Leads to Jail for Nursing Director

Doctor Sued in Huge Prescription Fraud Case

November 28, 2012

A psychiatrist who lives in Skokie is being sued for orchestrating what federal authorities are calling the largest prescription fraud case ever in Chicago.

The defendant, Dr. Michael J. Reinstein, received illegal kickbacks from pharmaceutical companies and submitted at least 140,000 false claims to Medicare and Medicaid for antipsychotic medications he prescribed for thousands of mentally ill patients in area nursing homes, according to a civil health care fraud lawsuit filed today.

Reinstein also submitted at least 50,000 claims to Medicare and Medicaid, falsely stating that he provided “pharmacologic management” for his patients at more than 30 area nursing homes and long-term care facilities, the lawsuit alleges.

The lawsuit seeks triple damages under the False Claims Act, plus a civil penalty of $5,500 to $11,000 for each alleged false claim.

“This is the largest civil case alleging prescription medication fraud against an individual ever brought in Chicago,” said Gary S. Shapiro, Acting United States Attorney for the Northern District of Illinois.

Full Article and Source:
Doc Sued in Huge Prescription Fraud Case