Friday, May 11, 2007

Convicted Psychiatrist Remained on Federal Payroll for Months: LA Times

Convicted Psychiatrist Remained on Federal Payroll for Months: LA Times
According to the Los Angeles Times Wenesday, psychiatrist Trey Sunderland, a senior researcher at the National Institutes of Health (NIH) and “a lasting symbol of the agency’s entanglements with drug companies,” remained on the federal payroll several months after he pleaded guilty to a federal conflict-of-interest charge relating to hundreds of thousands of dollars in payments from pharmaceutical companies. Last December, a U.S. District Judge fined Sunderland $300,000 and sentenced him to two years of supervised probation and 400 hours of community service. Representative Joe L. Barton called the NIH "an ethical Potemkin village [something that appears effective but isn't], where a hollow system appears to provide the illusion of integrity, but transgressors never leave."
The Citizens Commission on Human Rights says that criminality is rife within the mental health system, so much so that it has tracked more than 1,000 convictions of psychiatrists, psychologists and mental health workers and created a database as a public warning. Found at, it was established as a public service to law enforcement agencies, health care fraud investigators, medical and psychological licensing boards and the general public.
The LA Times story follows Massachusetts psychiatrist Daniel J. Carlat’s admission to the Boston Globe this week, stating: “Our [psychiatric] field as a whole is progressively being purchased lock, stock, and barrel by the drug companies: this includes the diagnoses, the treatment guidelines, and the national meetings.”
To read more about conflicts of interest in the mental health field, read CCHR’s publication, Psychiatric Diagnostic Manual Link to Drug Manufacturers.
You can contact CCHR at (800) 869-2247 or email

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