INdiana Systemic Thinking

April 29, 2010

Seroquel Slap-down

Filed under: Healthcare,Legal/Law,Pharmacology,psychiatry,schizophrenia,Seroquel — kurtglmft @ 10:28 am

According to the Associated Press, via the Fort Wayne Journal Gazette, drugmaker AstraZeneca will have to pay 520 million in fines to resolve “allegations of illegal marketing of the company’s antipsychotic drug Seroquel.”

“AstraZeneca allegedly marketed Seroquel for off-label uses — those not approved by federal drug regulators — including insomnia and psychiatric conditions other than schizophrenia and bipolar disorder.”

In addition,

“U.S. Attorney Michael Levy of Philadelphia, where the settlement was filed, said that the company had “turned patients into guinea pigs in an unsupervised drug test.”

AstraZeneca, which has its U.S. headquarters in Wilmington, Delaware, faces more than 25,000 product liability lawsuits over Seroquel, with most alleging that the drug caused diabetes. Seroquel has been on the market since 1997.

The government said AstraZeneca paid kickbacks to doctors recruited to serve as authors of articles by Astra Zeneca and the company’s agents about the unapproved uses of Seroquel.

The company also made payments to doctors to travel to resort locations to advise AstraZeneca about marketing messages for unapproved uses of the drug, the government stated.

AstraZeneca denied the allegations leveled by the government in the civil case settled Tuesday, saying it wanted to avoid the delay, uncertainty and expense of a protracted legal battle.”

The story goes on to state the drug is the second best seller for the company, generating sales of 4.9 Billion dollars.

PLA Changes Notice Procedures

The Blogmeister was recently made aware the Indiana Professional Licensing Agency (PLA) was notifying current licensees of the need to renew their licenses via email.  While the PLA is to be congratulated for attempting to save money on postage (they used to mail the reminders), they apparently did not realize many people change email addresses over the two year license period.   End result…  some people did not receive the notice and their licenses expired.  As of the time of this post, they are allowing people to still renew their licenses, but there is an additional fifty dollar fee.  Some people are reporting they received a mailed notice of this policy change, while others are being caught unaware.  The Blogmeister’s advice?  Check your license status ASAP and renew if you are expired.

Spring presents at IAMFT Spring Conference

Janis Abrams Spring presented last Friday (April 23, 2010) at the IAMFT spring conference on the topic of forgiveness.  Spring, who is the author of “After the Affiair” and “How can I forgive you” presented her methods for helping patients work through forgiveness issues regardless of the perceived hurt.  Spring was an excellent speaker who gave a clear and concise lecture of her methods, lacing the talk with plenty of examples.  She also took many questions from the audience of about 120 participants, which included Psychologists, Marriage and Family Therapists, Social Workers, and Mental Health Counselors.

IAMFT Welcomes AAMFT Prez

Filed under: AAMFT,Boards,IAMFT — kurtglmft @ 12:52 am

The Indiana Association of Marriage and Family Therapists welcomed Linda Schwallie, president of the American Association of Marriage and Family Therapists to their spring conference last friday (April 23, 2010).   President Schwallie gave a brief address following lunch detailing the state of the association and the strategic planning process currently underway within the association.  I had the opportunity to talk with her briefly when I arrived (late!) for the conference.  I was impressed with her passion for the association and profession and her willingness to discuss and listen to any topic.

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