Tuesday, September 14, 2010

World Suicide Prevention Day, What Was Said and What Wasn’t

There were a number of speeches made around the world during Suicide Prevention Day, but not many indicating a connection with suicide and psychotropic drugs. This past year over eight million Americans 18 or older thought seriously about committing suicide, more than two million had a plan to commit suicide, and more than one million attempted to take their own lives. Secretary of Health and Human Services Kathleen Sebelius (pictured)spoke out on World Suicide Prevention Day (WSPD), which was Sept. 10th. She of many items discussed the abominal Mental Health Parity Act, but what we couldn’t locate in her speech was that psychotropic drugs were a direct cause of suicides. According to reports on WSPD, suicide is the third leading cause of death for young people age 15 to 24, and suicide rates among young American Indians and Alaska Natives are double that. Young Latinas and lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender youths also have alarming rates of attempted suicide. Other reports indicate that those bereaved by suicide are seven times more likely to themselves commit suicide, as well as facing other possible negative health outcomes including substance abuse or depression.
In her speech Secretary Sebelius indicated roughly 90 percent of people who die by suicide suffered from depression or another diagnosable condition at the time of their death. Other reports indicate suicide rates are climbing in the military ranks. What was not said was any connection with suicides and psychotropic drugs.
Does the world want to prevent suicides? Why is there not a worldwide outrage with the connection of suicides and psychotropic drugs? Why is there not an outrage to the increase in distribution of antidepressants and suicide rates? It looks like black box warnings and stump speeches by government health secretaries are the extent to which they will go to investigating the connection of psychotropic drugs and increased suicide rates. Does the world really want to prevent suicides? Well start truly investigating the connection with psychotropic drugs!! If a placebo works the same or better than a drug then why use the drug, and if suicide rates have increased with antidepressants distribution then isn’t there a simple connection?

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