Parliament

Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | Video | Questions Of the Day | Search

 

Depressed kids need more than pill popping

27 February 2008

Depressed kids need more than pill popping

The practice of prescribing anti-depressants to children needs to be urgently reviewed and more funding directed to counselling services in light of new research demonstrating that these medications don't work for most patients, the Green Party says.

"This is particularly important when you also consider the fact that antidepressants have significant side effects including increased risk of suicidal thoughts and potentially harmful behaviour," Health Spokesperson Sue Kedgley says.

"The new study raises serious questions about the costs and benefits of the widespread use of these drugs, and demonstrates that treating anti-depressants as a 'one stop shop' to treat this illness would be seriously misguided.

"We know that significant numbers of children are being prescribed anti-depressants, with some even being given to pre-schoolers, despite Medsafe's prior warnings that this comes with severe risks. It is time for this to be reviewed in the light of this new study.

"We cannot continue to ignore the repeated warning from Medsafe and US regulators about the links between anti-depressant use and suicidal thoughts and hospitalisations for self harm," Ms Kedgley says.

"Given the side-effects of antidepressants, and particularly their acknowledged potential to increase suicidal thoughts and self harm, I believe an immediate review is needed," Ms Kedgley said.

"GPs have previously admitted that antidepressants are sometimes prescribed simply because of a lack of available counselling services. Instead of relying on drugs to solve all these issues, we need increased funding in this year's Government Budget for this kind of help, as well as for further research in the wake of the new study.

"While medications have their place, counselling services should be available to everyone, especially children and young people.

"It is essential that young people are offered the best possible counselling services and that antidepressants are not the only help available. We should not be putting our kids at risk simply due to lack of investment in this key part of primary health care and relying entirely on antidepressants with significant side effects."


ENDS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Gordon Campbell: On DHB Deficits And Free Trade

Currently the world is looking on aghast at the Trump administration’s plans to slash Obamacare, mainly in order to finance massive tax changes that will deliver most of their gains to the wealthy. Lives will be lost in the trade-off. Millions of Americans stand to lose access to the healthcare they need.

Spot the difference with New Zealand, where DHBs are under intense pressure to reduce deficits within a climate of chronic underfunding. More>>

 
 

Greens' Response: Slum-Like Rentals Exposed In Renting Review

“...The grim findings of the review are a wakeup call about the true state of rentals in this country. Too many renters are festering in slum-like conditions under the thumb of landlords who have largely unchecked powers and ignore tenants’ complaints when it suits them.” More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On The Life And Times Of Peter Dunne

The unkind might talk of sinking ships, others could be more reminded of a loaded revolver left on the desk by his Cabinet colleagues as they closed the door behind them, now that the polls in Ohariu had confirmed he was no longer of much use to National. More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On Labour’s Campaign Launch

One of the key motifs of Ardern’s speech was her repeated use of the phrase – “Now, what?” Cleverly, that looks like being Labour’s response to National’s ‘steady as it goes’ warning against not putting the economic ‘gains’ at risk. More>>

ALSO:

Lyndon Hood: Social Welfare, Explained

Speaking as someone who has seen better times and nowadays mostly operates by being really annoying and humiliating to deal with, I have some fellow feeling with the current system, so I’ll take this chance to set a few things straight.. More>>

ALSO:

Deregistered: Independent Board Decision On Family First

The Board considers that Family First has a purpose to promote its own particular views about marriage and the traditional family that cannot be determined to be for the public benefit in a way previously accepted as charitable... More>>

ALSO:

Transport Policies: Nats' New $10.5bn Roads Of National Significance

National is committing to the next generation of Roads of National Significance, National Party Transport Spokesperson Simon Bridges says. More>>

ALSO:

 
 
 
 
 
 

LATEST HEADLINES

  • PARLIAMENT
  • POLITICS
  • REGIONAL
 
 

Featured InfoPages

Opening the Election