Archive for the MEDICOPOLITICS Category

Psychiatric Ethics & the Goldwater Rule

Posted in MEDICOPOLITICS, ONLINE DEBATE, PERSONAL, PRACTICE, PSYCHIATRY, U.S. POLITICS with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on January 11, 2018 by drjgelb

The desperation of the Democrats, still baying at the moon over a year since their terrible candidate lost the election, despite her seditious, criminal actions to subvert the will of the American People, is astonishing. We have witnessed a complete refusal by the Democrats and their supporters to allow a smooth and peaceful transition of power. Instead, as each attempt to oust President Trump falls flat on its face, the derangement of his enemies escalates & now we have the absurd scene of highly trained medical specialists attempting to misuse their skills in order to achieve what their compatriots have been unable to pull off. Let me make it very clear to all my colleagues, friends and readers, opining on someone that one has not clinically evaluated, that one has never met, without taking a thorough psychiatric and medical history, conducting a Mental State Examination, including an assessment of Cognitive Function, obtaining a collaborative history from family, friends, involved medical practitioners and allied health and obtaining appropriate special investigations such as blood tests and medical imaging, is MALPRACTICE or put formally, Professional Misconduct. The actions of the psychiatrists supporting the outrageous 25th Amendment Coup attempt are a despicable display of partisan abuse of psychiatry reminiscent of the Soviet Union’s fabrication of the diagnosis of “Slowly Progressive Schizophrenia” used to incarcerate & stupefy hundreds of thousands of political dissidents and enemies of the state. So egregious was the USSR’s behaviour considered that the nation was expelled from the World Psychiatric Association and the psychiatrists that colluded with the regime were ostracised for life. I consider attempts to use our specialty as a political weapon makes the perpetrators the equivalent of War Criminals. At the very least, they don’t give a damn about President Trump’s Human Rights. They bring psychiatry into shameful disrepute and I sincerely hope that those engaged in this shameful, cowardly attack are formally reported to their State Medical Board for ethical investigation and censure. Below are some of the official APA statements regarding this ongoing debacle. You can see that the APA leadership has had to repeat its warning to members more than a few times and has had to head off at the pass several attempts to introduce confounding side issues to the debate.

APA Calls for End to ‘Armchair’ Psychiatry

WASHINGTON, D.C. — Today, the American Psychiatric Association (APA) reiterates its continued and unwavering commitment to the ethical principle known as “The Goldwater Rule.” We at the APA call for an end to psychiatrists providing professional opinions in the media about public figures whom they have not examined, whether it be on cable news appearances, books, or in social media. Armchair psychiatry or the use of psychiatry as a political tool is the misuse of psychiatry and is unacceptable and unethical.

The ethical principle, in place since 1973, guides physician members of the APA to refrain from publicly issuing professional medical opinions about individuals that they have not personally evaluated in a professional setting or context. Doing otherwise undermines the credibility and integrity of the profession and the physician-patient relationship. Although APA’s ethical guidelines can only be enforced against APA members, we urge all psychiatrists, regardless of membership, to abide by this guidance in respect of our patients and our profession.

A proper psychiatric evaluation requires more than a review of television appearances, tweets, and public comments. Psychiatrists are medical doctors; evaluating mental illness is no less thorough than diagnosing diabetes or heart disease. The standards in our profession require review of medical and psychiatric history and records and a complete examination of mental status. Often collateral information from family members or individuals who know the person well is included, with permission from the patient.

“The Goldwater Rule embodies these concepts and makes it unethical for a psychiatrist to render a professional opinion to the media about a public figure unless the psychiatrist has examined the person and has proper authorization to provide the statement,” said APA CEO and Medical Director Saul Levin, M.D., M.P.A. “APA stands behind this rule.”

The President is about to undergo his annual physical examination, and APA has confidence that his physician will follow the standard of care in examining all systems, which includes an age-appropriate medical and mental health evaluation. If mental health concerns are raised, the standard of care would result in the examining physician seeking consultation from an experienced psychiatrist who would approach the consultation with objectivity and within the physician-patient confidential relationship.

APA is ready to make recommendations from among our 37,000 psychiatrist members, physicians who have the knowledge, training, expertise, discretion, and objectivity to perform a thorough and apolitical evaluation. Using psychiatry for political or self-aggrandizing purposes is stigmatizing for our patients and negatively impacts our profession.



Goldwater Rule

by Aaron Levin

Restraint of psychiatrists’ comments on political candidates is grounded in APA’s response to an attempt to question Barry Goldwater’s mental health during the 1964 campaign for President.

“Do you believe Barry Goldwater is psychologically fit to serve as President of the United States?” the editors of Fact magazine asked 12,356 psychiatrists during the 1964 presidential campaign between Goldwater and Lyndon Johnson.

The responses set off a wave of reaction that resonated again most recently after media speculation about the mental status of the current Republican presidential candidate.

Fact published numerous comments questioning Sen. Barry Goldwater’s psychological capacity for office, which ultimately led to the creation of APA’s “Goldwater Rule” in 1973.

A look at the original episode reveals as much about psychiatry’s changes over the last half century as it does about politics then or now.

The harshly negative responses by people who had never even met Goldwater seem astonishing by today’s standards, as a sampling suggests:

“I believe Goldwater to be suffering from a chronic psychosis,” wrote one.

“A megalomaniacal, grandiose omnipotence appears to pervade Mr. Goldwater’s personality giving further evidence of his denial and lack of recognition of his own feelings of insecurity and ineffectiveness,” wrote another.

“From his published statements I get the impression that Goldwater is basically a paranoid schizophrenic who decompensates from time to time. … He resembles Mao Tse-tung,” said a third.

Not wanting to exclude other relevant 20th-century tyrants, another claimed, “I believe Goldwater has the same pathological makeup as Hitler, Castro, Stalin, and other known schizophrenic leaders.”

Others pushed back. In reality, Goldwater had worked in his family’s business, then served as a transport pilot in World War II, and retained a commission in the Air Force Reserve for many years. He was twice elected senator before the 1964 presidential race and would be again in 1968, 1974, and 1980.

It was difficult, said one psychiatrist quoted in Fact, to believe that a man who was “psychotic” or “schizophrenic” would have managed all that.

“I served as a flight surgeon in the USAF,” wrote Wilbert Lyons, M.D., of Sellersville, Pa. “I speak with authority when I say that Sen. Goldwater could not be a jet pilot if he were emotionally unstable.”

Goldwater certainly held very conservative political views and expressed them forcefully. Many of the respondents who declared him “unfit” were likely expressing their own political biases in psychiatric terms. Tellingly, many of them asked that their names be withheld from publication, perhaps hinting at some guilt feelings over their cavalier, remote diagnoses of the candidate.

Nevertheless, many other respondents understood immediately the greater implications of the question for psychiatry’s purported role in the electoral process.

“Your inquiry for a professional opinion regarding Sen. Barry Goldwater’s general mental stability is an insult to me,” wrote Thomas Stach, M.D., in 1964. “An inquiry of this type regarding any individual can only be based on ignorance of the field of psychiatry.”

Stach demanded an apology from the editors to all the psychiatrists who had received the survey.

“It was astounding to me when the survey first came out,” Stach, now retired in Willowbrook, Ill., told Psychiatric News. “It was impossible for a psychiatrist to come to a conclusion like that without a personal examination. The psychiatrists who were baited into giving responses were imprudent.”

Some offered a nuanced statement of their own positions.

“Politically, I heartily disapprove of Goldwater,” wrote Joseph Schachter, M.D., Ph.D., in 1964. “In fact, I find him somewhat frightening. Yet I do not feel I can honestly say he is psychologically unfit to serve as president.”

“I still think that’s a plausible view of the Goldwater situation,” said Schachter, now retired and living in New York City, in a recent interview. “Psychiatrists and psychoanalysts have the right as citizens to comment on elections and candidates and are free to do that, but without selecting a psychiatric diagnosis.”

“Vetting a candidate should be based on his or her position on the issues,” agreed Stach. “The survey betrayed the ignorance of the questioner.”

APA’s initial reaction to the Fact magazine article came swiftly.

“[S]hould you decide to publish the results of a purported ‘survey’ of psychiatric opinion on the question you have posed, the Association will take all possible measures to disavow its validity,” wrote APA Medical Director Walter Barton, M.D., in a letter to the magazine’s editors on October 1, 1964.

APA President Daniel Blain, M.D., denounced the compilation as “a hodge-podge of the personal political opinions of selected psychiatrists speaking as individuals. … [T]he replies to the question have no scientific or medical validity whatsoever.”

Tying political partisanship to the psychiatric profession, continued Blain, “has, in effect, administered a low blow to all who would work to advance the treatment and care of the mentally ill of America.”

APA’s formal response came in 1973 with the adoption of Section 7.3 in the Principles of Medical Ethics with Annotations Especially Applicable to Psychiatry, which became known as the Goldwater Rule.

The rule applies to public figures and states: “It is unethical for a psychiatrist to offer a professional opinion unless he or she has conducted an examination and has been granted proper authorization for such a statement” (see below).

The episode and the subsequent adoption of Section 7.3 appear to have dampened the enthusiasm of most APA members for a repeat performance, leaving psychiatric diagnosis to the media.

Text of APA’s Ethics Annotation Known as ‘Goldwater Rule’

7. 3. On occasion psychiatrists are asked for an opinion about an individual who is in the light of public attention or who has disclosed information about himself/herself through public media. In such circumstances, a psychiatrist may share with the public his or her expertise about psychiatric issues in general. However, it is unethical for a psychiatrist to offer a professional opinion unless he or she has conducted an examination and has been granted proper authorization for such a statement.


APA’s Goldwater Rule Remains a Guiding Principle for Physician Members

ARLINGTON, Va. — The American Psychiatric Association (APA) today released the following statement regarding The Goldwater Rule:

“In the past year and a half, there have been numerous news articles and commentaries on The Goldwater Rule. The Goldwater Rule is an ethics principle that guides our physician members not to provide professional opinions in the media about the mental health of someone they have not personally examined and without patient consent or other legal authority. A personal examination includes ruling out physical causes of or other reasons for a behavior. Nothing about the Goldwater Rule discourages psychiatrists from providing education to the public about mental illnesses; in fact, APA encourages psychiatrists to educate the public about the causes, symptoms, and treatment of mental illnesses and substance use disorders.

The APA would also like to dispel a common misconception about the so-called “Duty to Warn.” The duty to warn is a legal concept which varies from state to state, but which generally requires psychiatrists to breach the confidentiality of the therapeutic session when a risk of danger to others becomes known during treatment of the patient. It does not apply if there is no physician-patient relationship.”


APA Reaffirms Support for Goldwater Rule

ARLINGTON, Va. March 16, 2017 — The American Psychiatric Association (APA) today reaffirmed its support behind the ethics guideline commonly known as “The Goldwater Rule,” which asserts that member psychiatrists should not give professional opinions about the mental state of someone they have not personally evaluated.

The APA’s Ethics Committee issued an opinion that clarifies the ethical principle and answers questions that have been posed recently.

Since 1973, the American Psychiatric Association and its members have abided by a principle commonly known as “the Goldwater Rule.” The ethics principle is so named because of its association with an incident that took place during the 1964 presidential election. (See APA Blog on Goldwater Rule.) During that election, Fact magazine published a survey in which it queried some 12,356 psychiatrists on whether candidate Sen. Barry Goldwater, the GOP nominee, was psychologically fit to be president. A total of 2,417 of those queried responded, with 1,189 saying that Goldwater was unfit to assume the presidency. Goldwater would later sue the magazine, which was found liable for damages.

“It was unethical and irresponsible back in 1964 to offer professional opinions on people who were not properly evaluated and it is unethical and irresponsible today,” said APA President Maria A. Oquendo, M.D., Ph.D. “In the past year, we have received numerous inquiries from member psychiatrists, the press and the public about the Goldwater Rule. We decided to clarify the ethical underpinnings of the principle and answer some of the common questions raised by our members. APA continues to support these ethical principles.”

In reaffirming the existing policy, the Ethics Committee explained the rationale behind the rule. For example, offering a professional opinion or a diagnosis of someone they have not thoroughly examined compromises the integrity of the doctor and the profession and it has the potential to stigmatize those with mental illness. Furthermore, when a physician publicly gives a professional opinion on a public figure without consent, it violates the principle that a psychiatric evaluation must occur with consent or authorization.


The Goldwater Rule: Why breaking it is Unethical and Irresponsible

August 3rd 2016    

Every four years, the United States goes through a protracted elections process for the highest office in the land. This year, the election seems like anything but a normal contest, that has at times devolved into outright vitriol. The unique atmosphere of this year’s election cycle may lead some to want to psychoanalyze the candidates, but to do so would not only be unethical, it would be irresponsible.

Simply put, breaking the Goldwater Rule is irresponsible, potentially stigmatizing, and definitely unethical.

Maria A. Oquendo, M.D.

Since 1973, the American Psychiatric Association and its members have abided by a principle commonly known as “the Goldwater Rule,” which prohibits psychiatrists from offering opinions on someone they have not personally evaluated. The rule is so named because of its association with an incident that took place during the 1964 presidential election. During that election, Fact magazine published a survey in which they queried some 12,356 psychiatrists on whether candidate Sen. Barry Goldwater, the GOP nominee, was psychologically fit to be president. A total of 2,417 of those queried responded, with 1,189 saying that Goldwater was unfit to assume the presidency.

While there was no formal policy in place at the time that survey was published, the ethical implications of the Goldwater survey, in which some responding doctors even issued specific diagnoses without ever having examined him personally, became immediately clear. This large, very public ethical misstep by a significant number of psychiatrists violated the spirit of the ethical code that we live by as physicians, and could very well have eroded public confidence in psychiatry.

We live in an age where information on a given individual is easier to access and more abundant than ever before, particularly if that person happens to be a public figure. With that in mind, I can understand the desire to get inside the mind of a Presidential candidate. I can also understand how a patient might feel if they saw their doctor offering an uninformed medical opinion on someone they have never examined. A patient who sees that might lose confidence in their doctor, and would likely feel stigmatized by language painting a candidate with a mental disorder (real or perceived) as “unfit” or “unworthy” to assume the Presidency.

Simply put, breaking the Goldwater Rule is irresponsible, potentially stigmatizing, and definitely unethical.

The Goldwater Rule is published as an annotation in the Principles of Medical Ethics with Annotations Especially Applicable to Psychiatry. I encourage you all to read the full text of the rule below, and keep it in mind during this election cycle, and other events of similarly intense public interest.



The Ethical Psychiatrist’s Role in Public Elections

April 7th 2016

Presidential elections are intense and may lead some observers to speculate about the mental health of the candidates. People are curious about psychiatrists’ diagnostic opinions of politicians and other public figures. This is a sufficiently common phenomenon that APA added an annotation to the Principles of Medical Ethics With Annotations Especially Applicable to Psychiatry in 1973, commonly referred to as the Goldwater Rule, prohibiting psychiatrists from offering public opinions about people they have not personally evaluated.

Section 7, Article 3, of the Principles states, “On occasion psychiatrists are asked for an opinion about an individual who is in the light of public attention or who has disclosed information about himself/herself through public media. In such circumstances, a psychiatrist may share with the public his or her expertise about psychiatric issues in general. However, it is unethical for a psychiatrist to offer a professional opinion unless he or she has conducted an examination and has been granted proper authorization for such a statement.”

Why is it called the Goldwater Rule? During the 1964 presidential election, Fact magazine published the results of a survey it had mailed to 12,356 psychiatrists. Of the 2,417 respondents, 1,189 replied that Sen. Barry Goldwater was not psychologically fit to be president. For a detailed account of the responses, see Henry Pinsker, M.D.’s “Goldwater Rule History” in Psychiatric News. Sen. Goldwater successfully sued Fact for libel and was awarded $75,000 in punitive damages.

APA responded to this very public ethical misstep by a large number of psychiatrists with the annotation above, and periodically the Goldwater Rule is recapped in APA publications (“Ethics Reminder Offered About Goldwater Rule on Talking to the Media,” and in the national media (“Should Therapists Analyze Presidential Candidates?).

Beyond a reminder about the rule, it may be helpful to understand some of the ethical concepts behind it. Virtue ethics emphasizes the personal characteristics that society expects physicians to embody. Among these virtues are respect for others, humility, and adherence to diagnostic processes according to the standards of our field. If we venture a diagnostic impression about a person we have not examined, we trample upon these virtues.

In addition to inviting a lawsuit for libel or slander, a potential consequence of psychiatrists breaching these virtues is a diminution of public confidence in psychiatrists. If we will speak to the media about the possible psychiatric diagnosis of a person we have not evaluated, will we also reveal the identities and diagnoses of our patients? We must guard against undermining the protective cloak of confidentiality, without which people may refrain from seeking mental health treatment.

Political campaigns are brutal. Even a psychologically healthy person needs extra support if engaged as a candidate in an election. Because of stigma, that candidate needs to be assured of the utmost privacy and confidentiality if he or she is to enter treatment. If we are hazarding guesses about politicians’ diagnoses in the media, we will lose the opportunity to provide treatment to our political leaders, which is perhaps one of the most effective ways to ensure a mentally healthy leadership while simultaneously eroding the stigma attached to our field.

Psychiatrists can play an important role in elections, but it is mostly silent. 



There are many other similar statements, warnings, reminders and guidelines that have been issued on a regular basis since 1973, as each election cycle strained adherence to the Goldwater Rule but have no doubt, EVERY PSYCHIATRIST IS FULLY AWARE OF THEIR ETHICAL RESPONSIBILITIES IN THESE MATTERS and the public has the right to expect better of its key Mental Health Professionals. 






The Shocking Defeat of the United States

Posted in CRIME & CORRUPTION, Cultural Marxism, MEDICOPOLITICS, MIDDLE-EAST POLITICS, ONLINE DEBATE, POLITICAL ISLAM & JIHAD, U.S. POLITICS with tags , , , , , , , , , , on August 31, 2017 by drjgelb

Members of both the U.S. House of Representatives & the U.S. Senate have had to contend with the reality of their powerlessness for over a century, beginning as WWI ended in 1918. Woodrow Wilson warned the American people that as a result of the massive profits accruing to the military armaments industry & complicit military leaders, undue influence had reached such proportions as to dictate U.S. policy. President Wilson felt that he had failed the people by failing to stop these “men in suits” from obtaining so much power. President Roosevelt spoke several times of the gathering power & control of the military industrial complex and its ability to subvert elected government. He was careful with his words but those listening knew what he was warning the nation about. Harry Truman was shocked to discover that intelligence gathering was split between agencies & that he received information that could not be utilised because its meaning was so poorly communicated. He set up the CIA to co-ordinate the collation & presentation of all available intelligence into a comprehensible form and to ensure that the President was always fully informed. Little did he know that the CIA’s origin in the OSS made it a severely dysfunctional organisation from Day 1. Why? Because the OSS had placed the European Head of Intelligence for the Gestapo as the new CIA European boss and allowed him to hire & fire, leading to the placement of numerous former Nazis in the CIA as well as facilitating the escape of hundreds of war-criminal Nazis to Sth America. Truman stated in a public speech that he feared he had unleashed a “Gestapo-like” entity on Americans. Eisenhower became so alarmed at the actions of the CIA, the Deep State, that he referred to it as a malign “Shadow Government”. His warning, contained within his farewell speech, was chilling (watch it on You Tube) & so real were his fears that he changed the venue for the farewell speech at the last minute from the Capitol Building to the Oval Office, so he could complete his term & the speech without leaving the safety of the White House. JFK was a whole other story & it is now very clear that the CIA & its partners in crime, assassinated an elected President for daring to challenge their power.The 20 co-conspirators who met the night before the killing were the who’s who of the Bankers, Industrialists, Mafia & rogue politicians, FBI, CIA, the Generals etc of the U.S. and they employed a team of assassins the like of which had never before been gathered to murder JFK. Then, despite subsequent Presidents all being made aware of the facts, the Deep State doubled down and ensured that they remained the power behind the throne by intimidating, compromising and blackmailing every Federal politician elected as soon as they possibly could. This remains the case today. Massive colluders with the Deep State like the Clintons & Bushes are protected species & the Deep State will do all it can to see that no Justice ever comes for the Clinton Machine because both Bill & Hillary understood criminal hierarchies & understood the value of the Green Light they have been given. It is bullshit to think that the Intel Agencies are unaware of every last thing that HRC, Obama et al said & did and anyone observing the near perfect lockstep of CIA and the Clintons must realise the mortal danger one places oneself in if one objects too loudly! No wonder Jason Chaffetz had had enough! I wonder how harshly he was threatened and told to STFU. Under Obama, the Deep State was strengthened in every way, with virtually unfettered power to intimidate, lie to, monster, blackmail, defraud & sometimes even to kill those it designated enemies of the state for any or no reason. The American people MUST reject this creeping loss of the nation.


Posted in MEDICOPOLITICS with tags , , , , on December 25, 2013 by drjgelb

I read a Blog recently, where readers and author were locked in a battle royale over alternative cancer treatments.

Here’s my comment:

People with cancer and their loved ones are highly vulnerable, frightened and often desperate, not only to avoid untimely death but especially a painful or horrific one. So powerful is this primal fear of a horrible death associated with cancer that people from all backgrounds suspend their critical faculties and fail to detect the thousands of predatory, psychopathic individuals hunting for the weak & desperate to rip-off, defraud and exploit. Add to this the sad fact that Science has failed to ensure or demand that scientific method is taught to and understood by all from early on in school and that science be treated as a core subject, just like reading, writing and arithmetic. Without a true understanding of the significance and meaning of scientific evidence, all subsequent discussion is handicapped as an uninformed participant will likely raise examples that do not fulfil criteria as scientific evidence and they will not understand why science rejects their contribution. This naturally predisposes to the development of a search for alternative reasons for the rejection, hence the proliferation of myriad conspiracy theories essentially blaming greed and power as the motivators for science, rather than seeing multiple, varied motivating factors underpinning all human endeavours. To reduce the influence of the negative factors, science insists on several safeguards all too often missing from other forms of evidence. These include multiple peer review by experts not identified to the scientist, editorial board scrutiny, experimental replication to confirm findings, journal publication and invitation to criticism, move to Open Source publication to avoid conflicts of interest or favouritism and the current movement towards publication of all trials performed per topic by that author’s group, along with their raw data, so that anyone can analyse the data by any accepted statistical method in order to verify findings and so both negative and positive findings can be compared.

So, science is tightening up, leaving an even wider gap between it and pseudoscience. Alternative medical approaches to Cancer are unproven not because of Big Pharma. The alternative industry is worth not 1 billion dollars annually but tens of billions, yet the industry invests precious little in proper scientific research. Why is it so? It is entirely due to the need to prevent exposure of profitable commercial products as useless frauds. If no such fears existed, Universities would jump at the chance to accept funding for scientific study, with all the benefits that can produce for the Public, the University and its students. But unfortunately, alternative treatment promoters and producers cannot be tempted to make independent scientific validation of efficacy a central plank in their business plans, causing its absence from their corporate budgets year after year. National Regulatory Bodies require evidence of safety but not efficacy with any treatment not labeled a pharmaceutical. This applies to the vast majority of alternatives. Safe? Usually. Effective? Untested!

Whoever champions an unproven treatment and trumpets claims for its effectiveness without scientific proof, STOP RIGHT NOW! Go to the source of the treatment and demand it be scientifically trialled and published to allow criticism. Demand publication of the raw data so the findings can be verified. Demand that others attempt to replicate the findings. Then and only then can anyone trust what they read or hear about the alternative treatment of Cancer or any other medical condition.



Posted in MEDICOPOLITICS with tags , on May 10, 2013 by drjgelb

I’m getting pissed off by the weakness of doctors in opposing these organisations:

I commented tonight:

Anti-Vaccine activists are cranks of the worst kind. They use fear & cult like conspiracy theories to further their crazy aims. Undervaccination puts children too young to be immunised at great risk of death by preventable disease. The anti-vaccinators use false info to further their cause. They cannot prove any of their assertions re vaccines being unsafe. As soon as vaccination rates fall, epidemics follow & deaths are concentrated in non-immunised infants. Non-qualified nutjobs calling themselves “natural chemists” & similar bullshit names, claim that there is no such thing as herd immunity. They simply do not know what they are talking about! Most are too young to have seen wards full of diphtheria, measles, or polio victims in iron lungs! I have! The vaccine possible diseases killed millions of people….Smallpox, Typhoid Fever, Cholera, Chicken Pox Encephalitis etc etc. Ignore these charlatans & vaccinate your kids. Severe side effects are as rare as being hit by lightning. As for the obsessed anti-vaccinators? They should be criminally prosecuted for their lies resulting in sickness & death for our most vulnerable citizens.

I got encouragement from my father-in-law, who knows the difference between lies & the truth & That prompted me to post more!

I wrote:

“When similar talk gripped Japan several years ago, falling vaccination rates led to epidemics of measles involving thousands of cases. When vaccine rates rose again, the disease once again became rarely seen. The anti-vaccine mob believed Wakefield’s greed driven lies about Vaccines & Autism….he has been deregistered for his lies……lies for which he was paid! Forget political correctness & stop debating these idiots! Give them no more publicity! No more time on A Current Affair, no more time on radio or in the papers! Doctors, Scientists, Politicians & Parents need to tell the anti-western medical brigade to FUCK OFF!

Let me make it easy for everyone. Natural Medicine, Chinese Medicine, Reflexology & lots of other “alternatives” have been around for up to 5000yrs (Chinese) & in all that time, HOW MANY YEARS OF LIFE EXPECTANCY WERE ADDED TO HUMAN BEINGS LIVES? The Answer? FUCKING ZERO, ZIP, NONE!!

Life Expectancy after 5000Yrs of Chinese Medicine was 40yrs of age in 1900 in the West & even LESS in China!! SO WHY DID LIFE EXPECTANCY INCREASE FROM 40yrs to over 80yrs today!???

The answer is WESTERN MEDICINE!!! GET IT CRYSTAL BELIEVERS & POTION PEOPLE? Before the rise of modern medicine people had been dying of the same scourges as they had for over 100,000yrs!

I for one am sick & tired of Western Medicine being given such a pounding by New Age crackpots! When they get seriously ill from any one of thousands of known diseases, let them seek help only from the alternative practitioners & put their lives where their mouths have been! Watch how quickly the tune will change then!

Why am I angry? Because I’ve watched parents at a Melbourne hospital where I was working, deny their son chemo for leukaemia & I watched that kid slowly die an unnecessary death! And I was just a lowly intern….and I hated those parents for insisting that they knew better! I’ve seen this scenario 4-5 times over 32 yrs as a doctor…..what would you think by then?”



Posted in MEDICOPOLITICS with tags , , , on April 11, 2013 by drjgelb

The Medical Board of Australia is talking up recertification or revalidation, despite there being no evidence that doctors are increasingly incompetent, no evidence that recertification detects the problem doctors or that the process ensures remediation. As usual I just had to add my voice to the debate:

“The tone of comments posted so far, indicate the skepticism that rightly greets any further attempts to pile yet more burden on doctors. Multiple surveys have shown that doctors are highly stressed, burdened by government regulations & red-tape & sick of regulatory bodies that show scant regard for their health & well-being. I recall one survey revealing that over 50% of doctors would leave the profession if they could maintain their standard of living doing something else. Revalidation would give AHPRA & the MBA a stranglehold on doctors that is unprecedented in this country. Currently, “protecting patients” is pursued by AHPRA to the exclusion of all else, including the fate of the doctor’s family. Every previous step to control doctors has made medical life more difficult & less attractive as a carreer. Remember one of the greatest lies of all time, “I’m from the government & I’m here to help you”!!!



Posted in MEDICOPOLITICS with tags , , on April 10, 2013 by drjgelb

The plight of a doctor brought before the Medical Board of Australia for sitting on top of a boy during a consultation is being used to educate health practitioners.

Last week AHPRA announced that it would start publishing selected summaries of medical board panel hearings into alleged misconduct.

Only summaries of “educational and clinical value” are being made accessible online and the names of health practitioners involved will be removed.

So far, 16 summaries have appeared on the AHPRA site covering issues such as inappropriate care and “boundary violations”.

They include the case of a doctor who saw a boy “about a problem of oppositional behaviour”.

In March last year, the panel heard that the doctor reacted when the patient, who was accompanied by his mother, “raised his leg towards the doctor”. Believing the boy was attempting to kick him and hit him with a fist, the doctor pulled the child down to the floor and sat on him.

The boy’s father then made a formal complaint. The next day the child complained of “discomfort while breathing” and was diagnosed with “bruised ribs” by a GP.

But the medical board panel concluded the doctor involved had no case to answer, saying the boy’s injury was not major and the little force used was “reasonably necessary”.

“His actions were reasonable in the context of his concern for his physical wellbeing and it was reasonable for the practitioner to contain the situation and then ask the parent of the patient for consent,” the board concluded.

“When the parent did not consent to the action taken, the practitioner released the child.”

MY COMMENT 10/04/2013 Medical Observer

drjgelb to Dr John Drinkwater • 4 minutes ago −

When I did my 6 month training rotation to the now defunct Larundel Hospital in Bundoora, Victoria in 1985, it was brought to my attention by a male psychiatric RN that no formal acute threat management training was provided on campus & that patient on staff assaults were common. The nurse was a martial artist who had been involved in staff training in threat containment overseas & after generously teaching me the basic principles & a few easily applied techniques that involved almost zero risk to patients or staff, I asked if he would conduct a couple of sessions to teach my fellow registrars & the acute admissions nursing staff. Everyone who could squeeze into the conference room did so & came away from the sessions far more confident in handling dangerous or assaultive patients. Seeing the various scenarios demonstrated “live” & practising under the instructor’s gaze, was considered by all of us to be critical to the learning of these techniques. Inclusion of instruction in specialised handling of these situations could be a valuable addition to the Medical School curriculum. What do readers think?



Posted in MEDICOPOLITICS with tags , , on December 5, 2012 by drjgelb
How terrible to realise that government blackmail & extortion have succeeded in cowering the medical profession in Australia as it has in the UK & elsewhere. I don’t misuse the language, for what are threats of prosecution, ruination & suspension for pursuing independence in one’s career, other than standover, extortion & gangsterism in the fabricated guise of ensuring the public good. 
The profession united would never be so defeated & I for one am sickened by the traitors in our midst who seem so easily bought by the prospect of wielding power within the profession & advancing their circumstances. These turncoats betray public trust that doctors will stand up for their health & so betray the very philosophical underpinnings of doctoring. 
The obvious answer is the one constantly rejected by the profession’s cowardly & self-serving leadership…….organise the 80,000 strong medical workforce & refuse to play ball with government. Boycott the devaluation of our vocation & the attempts to force us into a weak & easily manipulated flock of sheep, kept in check by a few dogs snapping at our heels! I’ve witnessed 31yrs of corrosive disunity hand the heart of our profession to politicians, panels, boards & corporations, all for absolutely no public good. The same waiting times in ED, the same beds in corridors, fatal delays of ambulances, restricted availability of medications…..the list is long! The time for meaningless debate is long over, the future of our central role as deliverers of science based high quality health care to our fellow citizens is under the greatest threat in Australia’s history. Failure to prevent government from continuing to covertly implement their plan to introduce cheaper substitutes to perform our functions & to reduce the remaining doctors to a vestigial tail, able to be docked at the government’s pleasure, will destroy the most profound components, the so called “deep structure” of Medicine & risks forever diminishing its power to advance, to amaze, to inspire & ultimately, to heal. Please awaken colleagues & cease debating the process of shuffling the Titanic’s deckchairs! It’s truly time to man the lifeboats & abandon ship!!
%d bloggers like this: