Review backs controversial prison psychiatrist

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Justice Minister Darin King speaks to reporters about a review into psychiatric services in the province. — Photo by Keith Gosse/The Telegram

The provincial government has released a report into psychiatric services in the province's correctional system, which exonerates prison psychiatrist Dr. David Craig.

Craig has been a source of controversy within the justice system for more than four years, with inmates and workers within the system talking about his conservative attitude towards psychiatric medication.

Multiple government reports have called into question Craig's practice, and in the spring of 2010, the government  ordered a peer review into his service.

Dr. Philip Klassen, from Ontario, reviewed Craig's service and concluded that "Overall, Dr. Craig meets the standard of care, where that standard is comparable service provision in other provinces."

Klassen made five recommendations for improving psychiatric care in Newfoundland and Labrador prisons, specifically pointing to the fact that Craig currently works "within a professional vacuum" and by being part of a treatment team, he would be better able to serve inmates.

The peer review involved interviews with Dr. Craig, nurses within the prison system and Barry Fleming, the province's ombudsman who wrote a report calling into question Craig's treatment practices.

Based on the peer review document provided to reporters, it does not appear that Klassen interviewed any current or former inmates.

Justice Minister Darin King held a news conference to discuss the findings of the peer review.

He said the important thing about the report was that it was independent and objective.

"Today I am pleased to be releasing this review in its entirety. I accept Dr. Klassen's recommendations," King said.

"I recently met personally with Dr. Craig to discuss the review, and he said he would co-operate fully."

Geographic location: Ontario, Newfoundland and Labrador

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Recent comments

  • Katherine Jaconello
    November 10, 2012 - 08:42

    Of course, Dr. Craig met the standards of care. That is the problem - the standards of care. The public has to realize that "the standards of care" will only change when they educate themselves on the fraud of psychiatry and DO SOMETHING ABOUT IT. Otherwise, we can welcome a totalitarian regime of citizen informants, psychotropic drugging enforced by the police and courts or, as here, forced withdrawal without proper vitamin support, emotional support and attention to the terrible symptoms of withdrawal, and forced ECT coming down the line soon. Psychiatry is supported by the taxpayer. Taxpayer, beware. This is just a symptom of the heinous experimentation on people by authorities. Please - inform yourselves and cry out against it.

  • Concerned
    November 06, 2012 - 06:30

    Is there a way to throw this government out, this government is heartless, cold, uncontrollable, mouth pieces. They don't give a dam about the people of this province. Its all smoking mirrors and its going to get worst.

  • T G H
    November 05, 2012 - 19:51

    I personally, think that Dr. Craig deserves a very humble apology. He has been dragged through the media with his name and professional integrity in question. I have been of the impression that he is a hard working individual in a very difficult environment.

  • Rob
    November 05, 2012 - 14:22

    this is complete bull... just another peer protecting one of his own, id like to see him suffering from withdrawl of being cut off medications that another of his peers has deemed medically necessary, cold turkey, and having to suffer this with an already exacerbated level of stress due to being confined to an institution..... i hope the people of this province can agree to disagree with the findings of this report.