In general medicine the standard for informed consent includes communicating the nature of the diagnoses, the purpose of a proposed treatment or procedure, the risks and benefits of the proposed treatment, and informing the patient of alternative treatments so he can make an informed, educated choice.
Psychiatrists routinely do not inform patients of non-drug treatments, nor do they conduct thorough medical examinations to ensure that a person's problem does not stem from an untreated medical condition that is manifesting as a "psychiatric" symptom. They do not accurately inform patients of the nature of the diagnoses, which would require informing the patient that psychiatric diagnoses are completely subjective (based on behaviors only) and have no scientific/medical validity (no X-rays, brain scans, chemical imbalance tests to prove anyone has a mental disorder).
All patients should have what is called a "differential diagnosis." The doctor obtains a thorough history and conducts a complete physical exam, rules out all the possible problems that might cause a set of symptoms and explains any possible side effects of the recommended treatments.
There are numerous alternatives to psychiatric diagnoses and treatment, including standard medical care that does not require a stigmatizing and subjective psychiatric label or a mind-altering drug. Governments should endorse and fund non-drug treatments as alternatives to dangerous drugs that have been proven no more effective than placebo, and more dangerous than most street drugs.
Although CCHR does not condone or promote any specific practitioner, medical organization, practice or group, we have found the below resources to be helpful for individuals looking for more information on the following topics. The resources are for both Australian and international websites.
INFORMATION ABOUT NON DRUG APPROACHES TO MENTAL HEALTH AND/OR SAFELY GETTING OFF PSYCHIATRIC DRUGS
Australasian Integrative Medicine Association (AIMA) - is an independent not for profit organisation of individual medical practitioners seeking to provide whole person medical care by integrating evidence-based complementary medicine into mainstream practice. They have a "Find a Practitioner" on their website which searches by post code. http://aima.net.au
Safe Harbor includes links to find medical doctors who can assist with helping people safely get off of psychiatric drugs and medical personnel who will treat people without the use of psychiatric drugs. They have a "Find a Practitioner" which includes practitioners in Australia. http://www.alternativementalhealth.com
Alternative to Meds Center - Residential psychiatric medication withdrawal with medical and naturopathic oversight in Sedona, Arizona. Combining Orthomolecular Medicine and Customized Heavy Metal Chelation Therapies to address Mental Health. http://www.alternativetomedscenter.com
Green Mental Health - Holistically-centered mental health care system which reflects traditional environmental, humanitarian, and health conscious values. http://greenmentalhealthcare.com
Soteria House - Alternative & Non Drug Solutions for people diagnosed schizophrenic. http://www.moshersoteria.com
ALTERNATIVES TO PSYCHOTROPIC DRUGS FOR CHILDREN
Drug Free Attention Difficulties Support (DFADS) - Australian Support Group who also provide information on drug free options. http://dfads.org
The Block Center - Find and Treat Underlying Health Problems in Children and information on how children can safely get off of psychiatric drugs. http://www.blockcenter.com
DrugFreeChildren.org - Informational Website on Issues Surrounding the Use of "Chemical Restraints" on Children. http://www.drugfreechildren.org
The Doris J. Rapp Education Corporation - Vital Information on Environmental Factors Affecting Health in Children and Adults. http://www.drrapp.com
AbleChild - Parents for A Label and Drug Free Education. http://www.ablechild.org
MENTAL HEALTH PATIENTS RIGHTS GROUPS
Vanaheim Group – Australian based, they are committed to offering and inspiring alternatives to or within the mental illness sector. Their philosophy is one of autonomy and freedom. http://www.vanaheimgroup.com
MindFreedom International - is a nonprofit organization that works to win human rights and provide alternatives for people labeled with psychiatric disabilities. http://www.mindfreedom.org/about-us
International Campaign to Ban Electroshock (ICBE) - Founded in 2007 by ECT survivor Sue Clark-Wittenberg, ICBE deems ECT to be barbaric, unethical, inhumane, and torture. http://intcamp.wordpress.com
Australasian Integrative Medicine Association (AIMA) - is an independent not for profit organisation of individual medical practitioners seeking to provide whole person medical care by integrating evidence-based complementary medicine into mainstream practice. They have a "Find a Practitioner" on their website.
REPORTING SIDE EFFECTS OF DRUGS
In Australia, side effects of psychiatric drugs can be reported by anyone to the drug regulatory agency, The Therapeutic Goods Administration either online at https://www.ebs.tga.gov.au/ebs/ADRS/ADRSRepo.nsf?OpenDatabase
Or phone the Adverse Medicines Events Line on 1300 134 237.
HEALTH OPTIONS & INFORMATION
Naturalnews.com - Independent News on Natural Health, Nutrition and More. http://www.naturalnews.com
Natural Solutions - Natural Remedies & Healthy Solutions. http://www.naturalsolutionsmag.com
Natural Health Education - http://www.thepeopleschemist.com
National Probono Resource Association – This Australian group supports and promotes probono legal services. There is a state directory on the site which lists organizations who may be able to assist with legal advice in your state. http://nationalprobono.org.au