In an interview with The Times, the incoming president of the Royal College of Psychiatrists, Sir Simon Wessely, has launched a defence of psychiatry, claiming that the rise in antidepressant and stimulant prescriptions for children has been caused by pushy middle-class parents, teachers and pressure groups. “Medicalisation is not often done by doctors,” he claims. “In areas that are more accessible to public debate it’s almost the other way around. Now we see a huge rise in support groups, we see pressure brought to bear to bring in labels… You get obvious pressure from parents… It’s psychiatry which is against the medicalisation of normality.”
Furthermore Professor Wessely said it was nonsense to say that antidepressants did not work. “It’s the same with Ritalin. It’s probably over-prescribed, but it’s also under-prescribed because we don’t have good enough [child and adolescence mental health] services,” he said. Wessely also claims that other doctors look down on psychiatry because “we don’t have very big machines that buzz”.
The full article can be seen at: http://www.thetimes.co.uk/tto/health/news/article4125848.ece