There’s a disturbing story posted on the CBC-NL website. It concerns a young man jailed in HMP in St. John’s. His father alleges that when Jason Earle was trasnsferred into HMP, the psychiatrist-in-charge stopped Jason’s anti-psychotic medication.
This disturbing part is that this is not the first time such allegations have been made regarding the procedures used by Dr. David Craig, whom the story describes as the “only psychiatrist working at the penitentiary”.
One has to wonder how any physician can arbitrarily stop medication prescribed by another physician. It becomes especially worrisome when the medication is being used in a mental health context. Usually, decisions to medicate come after a careful review of the patient’s history and diagnosis. One can only hope the psychiatrist-in-charge at HMP did a thorough review of the patient history before deciding to suspend medication.
Similar accusations were made several months ago and that time, a review into the practices used by the psychiatrist(s) at HMP was promised. Perhaps it’s time that the complete results of the review, if conducted, are made public; if the review has not been completed, then a competent psychiatrist from outside the province with absolutely no connection to Dr. Craig should be brought in to review the current situation and the complete results made public. I’m sure Dr. Craig would have no objections to a competent peer review of his procedures and it would give the medical students with whom he works some reassurance that proper procedures are being followed if indeed that is the finding of such a review.
Members of the public have a right to know that incarceration in Newfoundland does not mean diminished medical care.