Tuesday, June 21, 2005


Mandatory Mental Health Screening for Public Schools

From Online Journal, TeenScreen: The lawsuits begin:
The scheme concocted by the pharmaceutical industry and pushed forward by the Bush administration to screen the entire nation's public school population for mental illness and treat them with controversial drugs was already setting off alarms among parents all across the country. But in the state of Indiana, the alarm just got louder.

Taxpayers better get out their checkbooks because school taxes are about to go up as the lawsuits against school boards start mounting over the TeenScreen depression survey being administered to children in the public schools.

The first notice of intent to sue was filed this month in Indiana by Michael and Teresa Rhoades who were outraged when they learned their daughter had been given a psychological test at school without their consent...

There's also a diagnosis for those children who like to argue with their parents, they may be afflicted with a mental illness known as oppositional-defiant disorder...

Ok, that's the part to scare us about our kids. Now is the part where we find out how much all this will cost.
"But I thought you said all this was free?"

While promoting TeenScreen to Congress, its executive director, Laurie Flynn, flat out lied when she told members of Congress that TeenScreen was free and its website statement that "The program does not receive financial support from the government and is not affiliated with, or funded by, any pharmaceutical companies."

Last Oct 21, Bush authorized $82 million for suicide prevention programs like TeenScreen...
University of South Florida Department of Child & Family Studies said $98,641 was awarded to expand the TeenScreen program in the Tampa Bay area...
In Ohio, under the governor's Executive Budget for 2006 and 2007, the Department of Mental Health has specifically earmarked $70,000 for TeenScreen for each of those years.

170 Nashville students had completed a TeenScreen survey...the survey was funded by grants from AdvoCare and Eli Lilly.

That might not seem like a whole lot of money. That money is only the grease, the article's author points out:
The New York Times in May 2003 reported that national sales of antipsychotics reached $6.4 billion in 2002...

A list of drugs that must be prescribed for kids is already set up, modeled after a list used in Texas since 1995, called the TMAP...

in Texas, Pfizer awarded $232,000 in grants to the Texas Department of Mental Health to "educate" mental health providers about TMAP, and in return, the Texas Medicaid program spent $233 million tax dollars on Pfizer drugs like Zoloft.

February 9, 2001, an article in the Dallas Morning News, titled State Spending More on Mental Illness Drugs, reported: "Texas now spends more money on medication to treat mental illness for low-income residents than on any other type of prescription drug."

In 2002, Missouri Medicaid spent $104 million on three TMAP drugs alone. The three topped the list of all other medications covered by Medicaid, including HIV, cancer, and heart drugs.
See how a little "grant" money goes a loooong way in generating profit for the pharmaceutical industry. The point to keep in mind here: the testing can become mandatory. I'm assuming with mandatory testing comes mandatory drug use (What ever happened to "Just say no!"?) I am sure all this will not effect my insurance costs the slightest. Thinking it might only lets the terrorist win.

This article continues by exploring the corruption present in this scheme.

Something to explore some more...

Other articles on a similiar theme:
Big Brother in Your Medicine Cabinet
Bill would force mentally ill to take their meds
South Bend Tribune (Indiana)

And, from the White House: New Freedom Initiative for People with Disabilities

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