Is Possibly Criminal Overmedication Of Veterans Causing More Suicides?

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overmedication

Veteran suicides and linkage to VA overmedication was the target of a new Op-Ed that argues overmedication is increasing suicides and possibly criminal.

At the center of the controversy within the Op-Ed is the recent VA Suicide Prevention report that analyzed veteran suicide rates form 2001-2014.

Professor Patrick Hahn, the author of The Baltimore Sun Op-Ed, highlights an alarming citation from a preeminent psychiatrist who may hold the key to this scourge. Overmedication may be done intentionally for the criminal purpose of keeping veterans from demanding more services.

The renouned psychiatrist, Dr. Peter Breggin, suggests VA zombifies veterans through overmedication with psychotropic drugs for the purpose of making them less demanding.

Does this surprise anyone? What about the Tomah VA Candyland fiasco?

Overmedication And Veteran Suicide Data

In 2006, the veteran suicide rate was lower than the national average. By 2014, the veteran suicide rate outstripped those numbers showing veterans were 21 more likely to commit suicide. Sadly, looking at the numbers for deployed veterans 18-24, the report shows the suicide percentage increased a shocking 359 percent.

Within those numbers, a strange correlation appeared. Veterans were compared who sought mental health treatment without a mental health diagnosis compared against those who did not seek treatment but who had a mental health diagnosis.

The data showed veterans who received mental health treatment but without a diagnosis had higher rates of suicide that those who had confirmed mental health complications but avoided VA treatment for such.

One clue as to why was highlighted in the Op-Ed.

One study from South Texas Veterans Healthcare System showed veterans receiving polypharmacy (5 or more psychotropic drugs administered concurrently) treatments may be at the center of the mystery. Those veterans who receive polypharmacy treatments were four times more likely to commit suicide.

RELATED: Higher Risk of Suicidal Ideation among Veterans Seeking Mental Health Treatment from both VA and non-VA Facilities Compared to Veterans Seeking VA Treatment Only

RELATED: Prevalence of Central Nervous System Polypharmacy and Associations with Overdose and Suicide-Related Behaviors in Iraq and Afghanistan War Veterans in VA Care 2010-2011

How about that? Making matters worse, many instances of polypharmacy usage have never been studied before. In fact, the usage on veterans was the study, both with and without safeguards to protect the veterans.

Remember Candyland Tomah VA?

This is likely what was going on in Tomah VA where veterans were receiving what was called the Houlihan Cocktail.

This cocktail was created through research and treatment done by Dr. David Houlihan. Veterans reported the cocktail caused them to feel like deadened zombies due to severely impaired function after taking the drugs.

Some veterans reported Dr. Houlihan was conducting research on certain veterans. Meanwhile, no public records suggest Dr. Houlihan was not approved for such research.

RELATED: Opiates Handed Out Like Candy At Tomah VA

Numerous veteran and civilian deaths were linked to the drug cocktail concoction created by Dr. Houlihan. As a result of public outcry, the psychiatrist was later terminated from employment at VA and subject to numerous investigations within the State of Wisconsin.

Should we be surprised? Professor Hahn says no:

“Antidepressants, antipsychotics, anticonvulsants, hypnotics and stimulants all have been linked to suicidality and/or completed suicides. Much of this evidence comes from trials bought and paid for by the drug companies that have a fiduciary duty to do everything in their power to minimize the harms and maximize the purported benefits of their wares. These trials are randomized and placebo-controlled and therefore proof of causation, not mere correlation. What happens when doctors prescribe these drugs, in combinations that have never been tested, for years and years beyond the duration of most clinical trials? Looks like we’ve got our answer.”

Criminal Motive Behind Overmedication?

Professor Hahn had a conversation with renounced psychiatrist Peter Breggin about overmedication and why VA is doing it.

Dr. Breggin concluded use of polypharmacy techniques have more to do with dumbing down veterans than treating them for their conditions:

“[T]he kinds of issues that people deal with that result in their getting psychiatric drugs are not helped by psychiatric drugs, which can only harm the brain and make it more difficult to feel your feelings and to think clearly. They drug the veterans, hoping basically to stupefy them and make them passive so they won’t demand services. I think it’s a crime that those who are veterans, who have survived our wars, are being killed off by the pharmaceutical empire and its practices.” (emphasis added)

In case you missed the quote, Dr. Breggin believes the practice of overmedication is often linked to criminal drugging of veterans to make them less demanding of VA clinicians.

Now, Dr. Breggin is a longtime critique of the pharmaceutical industry and is that nation’s best-known ADHD treatment critic. His most recent book is called Brain-Disabling Treatments in Psychiatry, where he discusses his theory of a “psychopharmaceutical complex.”

RELATED: About Dr. Peter Breggin

Congress Responds

This new information from the suicide report prompted lawmakers to create a bill called Veterans Overmedication Prevention Act. That Act proposes conducting more studies on the subject to learn more about it.

Senator John McCain stated in a press release:

“‘Combatting this [suicide] epidemic will require the best research and understanding about the key causes of veteran suicide, including whether overmedication of drugs, such as opioid pain-killers, is a contributing factor in suicide-related deaths. This legislation would authorize an independent review of veterans who died of suicide or a drug overdose over the last five years to ensure doctors develop safe and effective treatment plans for their veteran patients. We have a long way to go to eradicate veteran suicide, but this legislation builds on important efforts to end the tragedy that continues to claim far too many lives far too soon.'”

RELATED: McCain Bill On Overmedication

This seems all well and good, but Congress seems great at doing very little to help veterans other than approve spending more money to study problems that are never fixed.

Dr. Breggin seems to be onto something about why VA is using these extreme overmedication techniques. What do you think of his conclusion?

Professor Hahn raised some great points in his Op-Ed that need to be considered as We The People evaluate next steps for the agency charged with providing our care.

Source: http://www.baltimoresun.com/news/opinion/oped/bs-ed-overmedicated-vets-20161106-story.html

Dennis
Dennis
One preeminent Phd realized that multiple brain zapping drugs, mixed in a wide range of dosages amd prescribed at will by an army of dubiously trained or qualified doctors and pharmacists might just possibly be contributing to suicide. Toss in the notion that record breaking numbers of those same vets are now also considered dependent upon opiate drugs that are no longer dispensed for the same reason but certainly were by the truckload (until VHA got shut down by FDA)… Read more »
Reuben Castro Acosta
Reuben Castro Acosta
vVA DEATHCARE DONTCV GIVE A RATS ASS REAR VA @ BIG PHARMA WILL KEEP ON KILLING VETS FOR THE BONOUS C $$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$ V VETS WAKE UP UP $ SMELLL THE VA DEATHARE SAHIT IN YOUR MOUTH NOW C !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
namnibor
namnibor
I agree with the study. However, if the VA eventually gets allocated some amount to have a study performed, and the VA is conducting same study, the VA will only skew those numbers to make themselves look spanking clean of intent to harm and will continue doing the same thing. The Meat Grinder could care less. Legislation will not do a damn thing. This proposed legislation and any other legislation directed at the VA to do the right thing may… Read more »
namnibor
namnibor
I am going out on a limb here but I am betting that if members of congress were setting themselves on fire outside the Senate/House or on D.C. Mall, am betting that **immediate** countermeasures and all kinds of studies and remedies would be in-place in no time….but we are just lowly Veterans and even though these seriously increased Veteran Suicides were noticed going back to 2001, and the daily mantra of 22 Veteran Suicides a DAY…business as usual to these… Read more »
namnibor
namnibor
2001-2014 = 13 years x 365 days = 4745 days total of study x 22 Veteran Suicides a Day = 104,390 is the approx. # of Veterans that have killed themselves in that timeframe. WTF!!!!!!!! Just how many Veteran deaths are considered **extreme** enough to take serious action? I am betting the VA AFGE Employees do not have even a fraction of a fraction of a fraction of their herd killing themselves because if they did, measures would have been… Read more »
namnibor
namnibor

Off-topic but equally criminal: Democrats have been bussing mass numbers of African-Americans to voting registration places RIGHT AFTER RELEASE FROM CHURCH!!!!!!!!! What ever happened to the never mixing religion with politics like this?

Thomas
Thomas

Actually, & with all due respect, you are insane if you think those are both equally criminal. But glad you got your bitter political opinion in here.

Crazy elf
Crazy elf
If, and I do mean IF, Congress, and ultimately law enforcements around the country, were to begin holding the pharmaceutical companies, VHA and VA employees accountable for the massive lose of veterans lives. We might, just might, see a complete turnaround of how administrators, physicians, nurses, healthcare professionals would view their jobs. They just might, and again I say “might”, realize they would be better off doing their jobs vs. over medicating patients into “ZOMBIES”, Just so they can have… Read more »
Don Avant
The evidence is clear, The verdict is in, pass a law… And nothing will change…The VA has time and again demonstrated its’ ability to shrug off congressional attempts to control its’ bad behavior. The only way to correct bad behavior is SWIFT AND TERRIBLE RETRIBUTION, in a word, ACCOUNTABILITY… And that’s not going to happen as long as the VA continues to shield clinicians and other employees from their mistakes with the ridiculous idea that a VA facility is a… Read more »
Bill
Bill

When I finally quit taking the VA cocktails I told them I was not going to participate in thier NAZI experiment any longer.

This report is nothing new to me. I survived multiple sucide attempts.

James
Once you get into treatment they start, Try this medication, no this one ? Ok he cant walk straight, hes hitting the walls stumbling, he’s slurring his words, he keeps falling a sleep ! Ok that’s the combination, He wont bother us very soon. Employee to veteran what you want more food, here eat these, No they make me wet my pants ! Then there working, I don’t want to take them, do you understand, Yes we understand ! Take… Read more »
Bill
Bill

James I can tell you also have done the VA happy dance

Tim
Tim
Quit taking the VA meds esp psych then we are “flagged” disruptive! Worse when we want our mental health care and pain care outside of the VA samsrhing disrupitve must FLAG the veteran. Worse even if vets were below the “new CDC narctoic drug guidelines” many vets whebtild they would be cold turkeied or reduced to half or more savwd the narcotics up and thensuicded rarther than deal with the pain being told nobrelied will ever come anymore from the… Read more »
Louis
Louis
Having a mental impairment that has been categorized as treatment-resistant by the VA, I am now in the VA CHOICE for mental health care. I am in the process of Medication Management again, but the outside approach is different than the VA approach of medication approaches that made me feel I was a dartboard they threw medications at, to see if anything would stick. After conventional medications for my impairment didn’t work, they tried the heavy hitters e.g. Thorazine, and… Read more »
R. Michael Maddox / US NAVY SEABEES 73-75
R. Michael Maddox / US NAVY SEABEES 73-75
I really don’t get it. We, at the CVVAMC Dublin, Ga. must BEG and go through all sorts of tests and exams, not to mention Drug Tests every month, JUST to get half enough pain meds to help with Chronic, Inoperable, Pain. We read these horror stories and wonder WTF. I finally, last month, had a 7 in piece of Titanium along with 14 screws in my neck. JUST to hold my head on my freeking body. Finally got moved… Read more »
Nicole
Nicole

Agreed

B. Dobolina
B. Dobolina
Hmmmn, this story seems to have no substance. He just reiterates the Tomah story, and that is about it. Opiate use is way down. Not just in the VA but across the country. And what a stretch now to pool in prescriptions to suicides. How many were abusing the meds prescribed? Was there illicit drugs mixed in? So now every sad life is now blamed on the VA? Wouldn’t it be more appropriate to take the numbers ABOVE what the… Read more »
B. Wilkes
B. Wilkes
B. Dobolina, I am not sure what your experience or relationship is with the VA. Maybe you are in one of those that I have heard about that is outstanding! But from my experience in NC and TX, the doctors have acted as those they were focused on something else and that I was a distraction. Disclaimer, rant to follow. What would a doctor order X-rays for my back after I have a schedule appointment for my knees and we… Read more »
namnibor
namnibor

Troll of the VA AFGE variety.

Crazy elf
Crazy elf

Yep, a VA employee TROLL!

Seymore Klearly
Seymore Klearly

Hey Dobolina,

Is Director Walton’s number still 210-617-5300×15140. Does he know that you are on line trolling Disabled Veterans while at work?

You truly are messed up in your head if you think that trolling Disabled Veterans is some thing us tax payers are paying you for. Your about to get a wake up call.

Think I call and make sure he knows!!!

Seymore Klearly
Seymore Klearly

Dobolina,

With you attitude towards Veterans I hope you can understand there is no way you can be allowed to work anywhere near Veterans. Get ready because here it comes.

B. Wilkes
B. Wilkes
When I read an article that gets my attention, I ask one question, “Who cares”? That might seem harsh or hard hearted, but it is not. When you think about the logic behind the words and not the emotions that the words invoke. Once we get someone in a position of authority that possesses the determination and commitment to serve veterans and to ensure we get the care and not the “here’s a pill (insert drug name here) come back… Read more »
Dennis
Dennis
I suggest that we move the entire VHA orgaization, including every single employee to a remote island. Maybe Gilligan’s Isle. Then by lottery on lucky vet would be sent to the island for treatment. We could mount cameras and do a real life thing. If he survives, he is transported off the island, and the two vets will be sent. We keep adding more vets to the SS Vitanic for the trip to the island. We will do this until… Read more »
namnibor
namnibor

I like your idea but if I may make one tiny suggestion in that instead of an island, make it the International Space Station. Only upon each Veteran receiving the most outstanding healthcare will the VA employees receive their allotted rations of O2 and dehydrated goo.
If we cannot use ISS in orbit, use the several ground-based sister stations instead and call it a Bio Dome Experiment.
Healthcare in exchange for continuing to breath…the only way, to be sure.

Crazy elf
Crazy elf

They could reopen “Alcatraz”!
That might be more fitting.

Josie Klapper
Josie Klapper
I noticed that even in this article about over-prescription of psychiatric medicines, sure enough, “Over Prescription of Opioids” got included. Why is it that as someone who went through 9 years of trying EVERYTHING before finding that a certain combination of opioid drugs did make it so I didn’t literally wake up in screaming pain, or suddenly find myself in so much pain that I started vomiting from it, I feel that I am under attack as someone who does… Read more »
R. Michael Maddox / US NAVY SEABEES 73-75
R. Michael Maddox / US NAVY SEABEES 73-75
Josie Klapper, So TRUE. When you hear the news talking about Opioid overdoses, listen close. Large majority are Heroin. And many of them got on Heroin because the SYSTEM cut off there legal Pain Meds. All of us that get pain meds and get SOME relief, are all lumped in as addicts. It is wrong!!! I know of some that took themselves out because no one would give them enough to stop the damn pain. And now Civilian and all… Read more »
Nicole
Nicole

Whew say it again!

Sara
Sara
I know everyday I am alive pisses me local VA off! They are medicaly abusing me by not treating me fixing a broken pelvic bone that ha now damaged my muscles , twndons and ligaments in the hip spcket area let alone not treating the pain I have from that let alone a rare chronic very painful disease as well. Total mental and physical abuse intentionaly is going on with me. I know my VA would rather ae me DEAD… Read more »
James Gallegos
Ben. You deserve a real badge of honor. You site has reached hundreds of veteran’s and showed those veteran’s there are many of us with the same problem and they are not alone or crazy. Better. That a Badge the new administration should ask you to take over for Bob McDonald. You have done more for veteran’s that Bob has done period. I hope you never get tired and stop this site. One day my friend you will be rewarded.… Read more »
Crazy elf
Crazy elf

namnibor,
Check these articles out.
#1.)
“Massive Voter Fraud in Broward County Fl”
From, “The Post” by: Alice Greene
7 Nov 2016

#2)
“Roger Stone: NYPD Still Investigating Hillary’s Emails”
From “Infowars”. (08:22 minutes)

Crazy elf
Crazy elf

Also,
Last Saturday, a young woman tried to vote in Seminole County Fl. She was told she “…already voted!”

The NYPD are still investigating the Clinton Foundation. Seems those emails are factual concerning “Pay For Play” by all the people involved in Hillary’s circle.

R. Michael Maddox / US NAVY SEABEES 73-75
R. Michael Maddox / US NAVY SEABEES 73-75

Politics in America, as well as the rest of the World, Has been Pay to Play for all of time. Jeeez people Get Over It. Every single one of the Bastards in DC are doing some type of it. and ALWAYS HAVE!!!!!!!!

Seymore Klearly
Seymore Klearly
Michael, Not everyone agrees with you! I for one believe that our country would have broken up a long time ago if the corruption we are seeing today had always been. Today we have rules and laws that are not being followed just to protect some of the most corrupt people in our government. I for one am not just going to accept it as you have. So go ahead and vote Hillary clearly that is who you are trying… Read more »
Crazy elf
Crazy elf

If the VHA’s nationwide could kill off almost all the veterans through drug overdoses.
I bet their “bonuses” would increase 1,100%.
Of course, I wonder if any of these asswipes had considered doing this?

mary

Hey Crazy elf If Trump gets in, I think a lot of this VA mess WILL get worked out. If (gag) Hillary gets in… well all I can say is ‘Pucker up Men, ’cause HERE IT COMES and it aint gonna be pretty.

namnibor
namnibor

@Mary- Been so puckered-up as late that if I fart, tons of dogs come running.

Crazy elf
Crazy elf
@Mary, Newt Gingrich said something today, which makes perfect sense. It really won’t matter who is inaugurated. Because: Hillary will be like Nixon in his second term. She’ll be in front of Congress or other law enforcement agencies almost weekly. Due to her foundations illegal activities. Remember, Nixon resigned after one and a half years into his second term. He was a “CROOK”! And Trump will be inundated with slanderous innuendos and other forms of rhetoric by the Democrats almost… Read more »
James Gallegos
Dobo. The VA givith and taken away pain medication. After it was discovered the gig was up and the ran scared and stopped the ? all together. You seem like the type of person. Who could be watching someone give a death drug and when asked about it If. Your memory fails you. You seem just as dangerous as the other corrupt deny deny die employees caught. Did you get your bonus. What kind of drugs are you on. Probably… Read more »
R. MIchael Maddox
R. MIchael Maddox
Seymore Klearly NO I DID NOT vote for the Bitch. and I am not saying go along I just said get over it. And then MAYBE WE can work together to fix this mess instead of everyone just arguing and complaining. That is what the politicians do and get NOTHING done. And from what I see right now at 12;36 am est. Trump is your, or I will say OUR President. So lets hope he surrounds himself with VERY smart… Read more »
chris
chris

so much truth to this I live it every day… up this med down this med never stops no real help.. the storys I could tell, about nellis afb mental health, and the lake haven war hero’s hospital in Colorado…

J.Klapper
J.Klapper
My fellow chronic pain victims find the exact OPPOSITE. The DEA seems bound and determined to force all chronic pain patients to either commit suicide or onto the illegal drug where we can either be criminals or OD’s Frankly it’s 6 of one, even before the DEA got the CDC to overstep ALL authority to cook up “recommendations” made by unknown panel members of obviously NO INTEREST in controlling actual chronic pain it was hit or miss if you ended… Read more »
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