Thursday, February 12, 2015

Garth Daniels - Duty of Disclosure

"...Human rights are essential in a democratic and inclusive society that respects the rule of law, human dignity, equality and freedom..."
                                  Parliament of Victoria Australia. initiated in Assembly 2 May 2006. A Bill.

                                                              September 2014

 These are the fundamental principles which would be expected in any democratic and inclusive society... except somehow in the discipline of psychiatry within this State of Victoria, Australia, Mental Health ... it appears there are psychiatrists who consider themselves exempt with respect to some if not all of these Human Rights.

The International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights - Article 7 states that "No one shall be subjected to torture to cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment.  In particular, no one shall be subjected without his FREE CONSENT to medical or scientific experimentation".

The new Mental Health Act 2014 of the State of Victoria makes provision for a patient to prepare an Advanced Directive and to assign a Nominated Person to exercise his rights under the legislative provisions should that person become incompetent.  These fundamental principles were ignored despite the psychiatrists treating Garth being made aware of it.

Perhaps the attention of those psychiatrists should be drawn to the Crimes Act of this State of Victoria... in particular that :-

"A person who -without lawful excuse, administers to or causes to be taken by another person any substance which is capable, and which the first mentioned person (is made aware) knows is capable, in the circumstances, of interfering substantially (a potentially fatal allergic reaction) with the bodily functions of the other person; and...

knows that the other person has not consented to the administration or taking of the substance or is reckless as to whether or not the other person has so consented - is guilty of an indictable offence. Penalty 5 years imprisonment."

After being discharged from hospital late last year and actively participating in the community some minor adjustment due to clinical reasons were necessary to Garth's prescriptions; and, he voluntary re-admitted considering that any adjustments to his prescriptions (on the advice of his psychiatrist in the private sector) would be better facilitated in hospital.

Garth and his parents both considering that his prior admission to Eastern Health had been so very successful and  attendant care of the nurses exemplary - assumed this to be a viable proposition. What was to follow prompted these references to Human Rights, the Mental Health Act and the Crimes Act.

Garth's voluntary admission to seek adjustments to his drug prescriptions in a controlled environment while met with some trepidation, was without major incident... Garth willingly accepting to be strapped to a bed rather than be held in isolation/seclusion in a room which is locked from the outside and, in the past caused Garth to being claustrophobic. Besides which allegations of Garth being violent appears to be systemic despite evidence to the contrary with no cognizance of the iatrogenic effect of polypharmacy.

However, nine weeks strapped to a bed and being injected with a drug that gives rise to akathisia (inner restlessness - inability to sit or stand still)... and to a patient who is prone to treatment emergent Neuroleptic Malignant Syndrome (NMS) can be fatal and may be only described as absolute torture. Particularly, when the patient is unable to move freely and is compliant with oral medication... Voluntary admitting to hospital and then finding himself strapped to a bed...indefinitely. 

Now at Eastern Health  it appears that all the legislative safe guards of Parliament which ensures the rights of patient in particular, the patient's right to consent and that the patients wishes be taken into account in relation to Garth, have been railroaded yet again... despite the new Mental Health Act 2014.

A return to polypharmacy (combination of prescription drugs) and intra-muscular injections... a potentially fatal injection which is in direct conflict with the oral prescriptions and mono therapy initiated and implemented by a consultant from Eastern Health; whose successful treatment is  negated by colleagues within the same mental health service.

It is four months since that admission and only recently Garth has been released from being strapped to a bed.  Garth had deteriorated and showed little improvement since the reintroduction of an intra-muscular injection as part of Garth's treatment, with a concomitant exacerbation of side effects ... akathisia, cog-wheeling, tardive symptoms, Parkinson like tremor and a state of delirium.

The current treating psychiatrist Dr. Andrew Cheong considers that Garth has showed substantial improvement since commencement of the intra-muscular injection.(see footnote*)

Foot note:

Garth on 12 February was given another depot intra-muscular injection despite his refusal and that of his nominated person to consent. Garth is prone to treatment emergent Neuroleptic Malignancy (NMS).   Today,(15 February 2015) Garth is back in four point restraint strapped to a bed. 

Are psychiatrist not aware that when the injection reaches the body water table it causes adverse drug reactions?  This patient has the right to claim having his own PhD in regard to how the drugs affects him adversely... after all he has been treated by some 250 psychiatrists within the State of Victoria Mental Health System. What has been the outcome?

* 2 March 2015 Dr. Andrew Cheong ceased prescribing Zuclopenthixol (Decanoate) aka Clopixol Depot Injection...But, Clopixol Acuphase (a short acting injection) continues to be administered as a "prn".