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Action Alert: Free Justina Now! Stop Psychiatric Assault!

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Read Justina's Story and get involved! On February 10, 2013, Justina's doctor at Tufts (Dr. Korson) sent Justina to Boston Children's Hospital (BCH) to receive treatment for Mitochondrial Disease, which had flared up dangerously with the flu. Justina's GI specialist had transferred from Tufts to Boston Children's Hospital (BCH) and was expecting to admit her under his care...

 

On February 10, 2013, Justina's doctor at Tufts (Dr. Korson) sent Justina to Boston Children's Hospital (BCH) to receive treatment for Mitochondrial Disease, which had flared up dangerously with the flu. Justina's GI specialist had transferred from Tufts to Boston Children's Hospital (BCH) and was expecting to admit her under his care.

Instead, a BCH neurologist and psychologist intercepted the admission, asserting "Mitochondrial Disease does not exist," and diagnosing her with  "Somatoform Disorder," meaning it was "all in her head."  When Justina's parents disagreed with the 'new' treatment plan presented to them, because it prevented Justina from seeing her Tufts doctors, getting any outside opinions, or even discussing their daughter's medical condition, Boston Children's Hospital called Dcf, and gained custody of Justina.

When the family arrived on February 14, 2013 to discharge Justina and take her to her scheduled appointments at Tufts.  Rather than acknowledge parental rights and demonstrate respect for their successfully dealing with their daughter's long standing medical problems, BCH was ready with multiple security guards to escort the family out of the hospital and inform them that should they return they would be trespassing.  Justina spent the following nine months on a locked psychiatric ward called Bader-5, without seeing any medical doctors for her Mitochondrial Disease.

While at BCH, Justina was prevented not only from getting medical care, but also from continuing her education, contacting her friends and family, and practicing her religion. BCH only allowed her family one hour a week supervised. After 9 months she was transferred to a non-medical short term facility. In the 5 months she has been there she has been singled out for abuse, laughed at for not being able to walk, and her family visits were used as a means of manipulating the family living in Connecticut. A competitive ice skater, like her mother and sister, Justina's health has deteriorated. Her hairline and gums have receded, and she is unable to walk, and confined to a wheelchair. Lines suggesting sepsis can be seen on her abdomen from a neglected port to flush her colon.

Recently, the Boston Court granted permanent custody to Massachusetts DCF to be revisited in May and turned a blind eye to volumes of medical evidence in favor of an unsubstantiated claim that Justina's parents, who followed their doctors' treatment plan to the letter, were"over medicalizing" their daughter. Without any previous history of claims of abuse, and without any investigation of the family (whose doctors' all support the Pelletiers, including those in Connecticut) judge Johnston deferred to the suggestion of "Munchausen's by proxy" made by Boston Children's Hospital psychologist, I. Simona Bujoreanu, author of many papers on Somatoform Disorders.

Pelletier says that, to date, state and local lawmakers haven't been of assistance to his family. But a tsunami of faxes to both governors, as well as to state and federal Representatives and Senators could change that.

Call Mass. And Conn. Officials To Demand Action

After faxing, take the "Free Justina Now!" fight directly to the governors and attorneys general of Massachusetts and Connecticut. Call them at the phone numbers below to demand they take immediate action to reunite Justina with her parents, sisters and family doctors:

Massachusetts Governor Deval Patrick

(617) 725-4005

Massachusetts Attorney General Martha Coakley

(617) 727-2200

Connecticut Governor Daniel P. Malloy

(860) 566-4840

Connecticut Attorney General George Jepsen

(860) 808-5318

 

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Mary Ann Ebert - New York State Activist

Mary Ann Ebert of Mental Patients Liberation Alliance of Syracuse helped found MindFreedom International's Support Coalition and provided early technical assistance to get it off the ground. Mary Ann has worked for decades to support human rights and alternatives of people in the mental health system. (Photo by Tom Olin.)
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