Friday, February 15, 2019

A belated Valentine from Dick and Pat

“I am certainly not the Romeo type,” Dick Nixon admitted. But he loved nothing more than putting on a tie and slacks and taking a spring bicycle ride with Pat and Tricia.

Friday, February 8, 2019

New questions about ketamine at HCMC

Two days after the abrupt resignation of Jon Pryor, the CEO of Hennepin Healthcare, former Acting U.S. Attorney General Sally Yates has raised new questions about the use of ketamine by HCMC paramedics and Minneapolis police. While her work was cut short by the Minneapolis City Council, Yates has released a memo on its preliminary findings.

From the Star Tribune:

From July to September, the Atlanta-based firm where Yates works, King & Spalding, spent about 427 hours examining materials from 132 police encounters, including 122 hours of video, that took place from 2016 to 2018 and included the term “ketamine” in police reports, according to a letter from Yates. Some of the videos show people being uncooperative or aggressive toward the officers, many with signs of severe mental illness. In the majority of cases, the report said, officers acted professionally, even when dealing with difficult people.

Yet in a significant number of cases involving ketamine, the officers also diagnosed patients with “excited delirium syndrome,” according to the report. Excited delirium is a controversial term among medical authorities that describes a form of potentially fatal severe agitation, and its prevalence and even its existence are a matter of debate. The Yates report says that some patients did not always show obvious signs of such a high level of agitation, and investigators found no evidence that police were trained to identify the condition.

The report also notes the mention of ketamine in police reports grew from three in 2012 to 62 in 2017, citing numbers from a Minneapolis civil rights report.

Tuesday, February 5, 2019

Justice for families victimized by Dr. Ewen Cameron at McGill?

From the National Post, a remarkable development in one of psychiatry's most notorious research scandals:

Last week, Julie Tanny, now 65, filed a class-action lawsuit application in Quebec’s Superior Court on behalf of anyone (Ewen) Cameron treated at the Allan Memorial Institute from 1948-64. It alleges, in effect, that the doctor’s practice of “de-patterning” his patients — using drug cocktails, electroconvulsive shocks and broadcasts of the same message hundreds of thousands of times in a row to wash their brain of illness — ruined hundreds of lives: the patients’ and those of their family members and children.

The lawsuit, which the court still has to certify, characterizes Cameron’s tactics as “nothing more than an electronic lobotomy.” It claims he damaged many of his patients’ brains and shattered their psyches, leaving them unable “to function in society and within their families.”

Thursday, January 31, 2019

Frank Serpico

 You've seen Al Pacino. Now watch the man himself. This one is on YouTube, but it won't be there for long.