Family practitioners and docs with no specialized training prescribe powerful psychotropics all the time.

A young friend of mine was in the middle of a very dangerous mental health crisis last year, and I feared for his life. His GP prescribed him several drugs, one after the other as each one failed to show benefit. This all happened after brief, 15-minute consults.

I shared what was going on with my friend who is a highly trained “hospitaler” psychiatrist.

He urged that the young man be seen by a trained specialist rather than an ordinary doctor whose office is stuffed with samples and pamphlets from Big Pharma.

He made the point that advertising to physicians is no substitute for actual training and experience, and that real mental health experts are usually opposed to handing drugs out like candy.

FINDING one of these experts or getting past the GP gatekeepers seems often to be a serious challenge. My friend lives in a country with single-payer, nationally administered health care, and the system denied him access to a specialist.


P.S. He’s fine now and off all his meds.

Writer. Runner. Marine. Airman. Former LGBTQ and HIV activist. Former ActUpNY and Queer Nation. Polyglot. Middle-aged, uppity faggot.

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