Letters to the Editor
We Need to Go Back
Psychiatric News
Volume 44 Number 19 page 36-36

Thank you for the thoughtful and comprehensive review of the presidential symposium in the article "Experts Call for New Ways to Collaborate With Pharma" in the July 3 issue. For one who wasn't at APA's 2009 annual meeting, what was conveyed was informative and encouraging. I have found it interesting that in my new part-time work as a prison psychiatrist, I have found the use of older antidepressants and antipsychotics to be generally quite satisfactory in many cases.

I would like to make an additional point. It is clear that our field has become more biological, and more and more psychiatrists tend to do 15-minute med checks. As Dr. Steven Sharfstein once said during his presidency, the biopsychosocial model has become the bio-bio-bio model. My sense is that the strong influence of pharma was one of the major factors, in addition to managed care and reimbursement issues, that led to this change. I doubt that just changing our relationship to pharma will head us back in the other direction. What can we now do to reestablish us as biopsychosocial psychiatrists?

 Milwaukee, Wis.

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