Psychiatric center accused of dangerous over-medication

Psychiatrists allege that the management at Psykiatrisk Center Glostrup ignored worries about the over-medication of patients that was dictated by the managing director

June 19th, 2012 1:26 pm| by admin
facebooktwittergoogle_pluspinterestmail

A Greater Copenhagen psychiatric care centre is facing intense criticism from former employees and the Health Ministry over allegations of over-medication of patients and poor management.

Psychiatrists working at Psykiatrisk Center Glostrup have reportedly been concerned for several years that patients were receiving doses of anti-psychotic medications that exceeded recommendations.

Michael Von Buchwald, a former centre psychiatrist, told public broadcaster DR that many patients were also receiving tranquilisers, which had resulted in some developing breathing problems.

“I don’t think it’s defensible. It shouldn’t be happening,” he said.

Buchwald is one of 11 psychiatrists that have resigned from the centre in recent years due to disillusionment with the leadership.

“The psychiatrists are partially unsatisfied with the working environment, leadership style and the way that they are medicating,” Buchwald said.

Concern about the over-medication has now lead the Health Ministry to launch an investigation and condemn the management for overdosing patients.

“We want to ensure that there is sufficient justification to treat patients in this way as we do not want to subject patients to further risk,” Anne Mette Dons, head of the Health Ministry's inspection authority told DR.

Psychiatrists that have spoken with the press indicated that the high doses of the anti-psychotic medication, Zyprexa, were ordered by Henrik Lublin, the psychiatrist who heads the centre. Lublin said he had reversed the decision after receiving an anonymous letter in March drawing attention to the problem.

But a copy of minutes from a meeting in December 2009 reveal that Lublin he had been made aware of the over-medication problem long before.

“The head clinician’s prescriptions of Zyprexa (anti-psychotic medication) clearly exceed the instructed doses while also combining them with benzodiazepams (tranquilisers),” the minutes state.

Psychiatrist Bent Rosenbaum was at the 2009 meeting, confirmed that the management had been aware of the problem.

“It’s a high level of denial,” Rosenbaum told DR. “The management knew the psychiatrists were dissatisfied with the doses that the chief psychiatrists dictated should be used.”

Lublin, however, has denied any irresponsible behaviour.

“I think we have been fully responsible and have used the medicines responsibly,” he told DR.

Villages for the elderly with Alzheimer’s are designed to make their last days enjoyable (photo: iStock)
More villages for people with Alzheimer’s on the way
More Danish municipalities are planning to build villages for people with A...
Rubadub in Christiania (photo: iStock)
Coming up Soon: Waiting reggae-style, wealth coaching and workshops on smart citizenship
Practise your Danish Are you new to town? Join the group ‘Meet the Danes...
Admire 'Ladybugs' by Seyran Kirmizitopraks (photo: Laurie Charles)
Worshipping at the Temple, Palace, Salon, Studio and Exchange
No small art deal is awaiting Copenhagen in September. TRUST is a one-of-a-...
Ulliel (left) has succeeded in inhabiting an even creepier character than the lead role he played in ‘Hannibal Rising’
Film review of ‘Saint Laurent’
In yet another example of the extraordinarily poor timing exhibited by the ...
They just scored a hund-in-one
What if Tiger’s immense golf talent had stayed in the woods?
Some of my fondest memories growing up in the Smith household back in Bligh...
Who’s to blame? Nerdy Smurf, Skinny Wallace, Mr Strong or Jolly Green Dwarf?
At Cinemas: Pixar’s latest Perisher pleaser is here
Providing your Danish is in good nick, there’s no shortage of releases th...