This is a list of our past meetings. This list contains everything that has already occurred as of yesterday. To check our current meetings schedule, please visit the Upcoming Meetings page.

 

Wednesday, May 17, 2017

Presenter: Jacob Holzer MD
Title: (reschedule to later date) Individual Anti-government Rhetoric, Violence, and Vulnerability
Background: This presentation reviews individuals who, due to a ‘vulnerability’, may be prone to act in a violent manner in ‘geopolitical’ context.
Details: Key points of this presentation are: 1- geopolitical context is broad: domestic politics, causes (anti-development, anti-abortion), nationalism, racism, etc. 2- the predisposing vulnerability factors are broad, incl. psychiatric disorders, personality disorders, cognitive disorders, TBI, etc. Insanity defense would not apply in most cases. 3- salient issues include: a) thoughts of harassment, victimization, b) mental health issues/symptoms, c) external inciting event 4- despite the variance, some patterns run through man


Wednesday, May 10, 2017

Presenter: Barry Roth & Eric Drogin
Title: A survey of forensic scams


Wednesday, May 3, 2017

Presenter: David Benjamin
Title: Regular Meeting


Wednesday, April 26, 2017

Presenter: Michael Lamport Commons, Ph.D.
Title: Higher behavioral-developmental-stage delusions. r = .7 in predicting stage
Details: This is a presentation on an invited DARPA grant proposal. Stacked-Neural Networks are smarter than a single-stack neural network. Single neural networks are only as smart as insects. They operantly condition by learning from what is rewarded. There can only be one neural net operating in a only first stack. Second stack neural networks integrate A large number of first-stack-neural networks. The 2 stacks together have the smartness of rats and pigeons. No present single neural network can emulate them.


Wednesday, April 19, 2017

Presenter: Alexandra Harrison, MD
Title: 28th Annual L. Lee Hasenbush Visiting Lectureship at MMHC
Details: 28th Annual L. Lee Hasenbush Visiting Lectureship Alexandra Harrison, MD Wednesday, April 19, 2017 Massachusetts Mental Health Center 75 Fenwood Road 2nd Floor Conference Room Boston, MA 02115 Schedule of Events: 10:30 – 12:00 You Can Have Your Opinion: Integrating Developmental and Psychoanalytic Theories” 12:00 – 12:30 Lunch 12:30 – 2:00pm Case Conference


Wednesday, April 12, 2017

Presenter: Mickey Arieli, Affiliation Research Fellow –ICT International Institute For Counter-Terrorism IDC Israel -Founder and former Director of the Division of Enforcement (pharmaceutical crime ) Ministry of Health Israel
Title: Forensic and Bioethical reflections on Psychoactive Drugs & Terrorism
Details: Whereas most studies regarding terrorism and drugs focused on the methods of financing terror-this presentation will review and reflect upon the use of psychoactive drugs by lone wolf and organized terror groups.The introduction of such drugs as Captagon,which according to forensic lab tests including our own contain methamphetamine and the abuse of synthetic cannabinoids will have a definite effect regarding the profiling and later the operational actions against terrorists. The abuse of such substances and its pharmacological effects regarding aggression,violence and depression of moral and otherwise normal ethical behavior has had a major effect globally. We will also look at the dangers regarding comorbity of substance abuse and other mental disorders. The operational and ethical effects regarding anti-terrorist units in hostage holding situations whereby such terrorists are under the effect of such substances will also be discussed.


Wednesday, April 5, 2017

Presenter: Eric Drogin
Title: Professional Liability for Forensic Activities: Liability Without a Treatment Relationship


Wednesday, March 29, 2017

Presenter: Paul Morantz
Title: Regular Meeting


Wednesday, March 22, 2017

Presenter: The Usual Participants
Title: Regular Meeting


Wednesday, March 15, 2017

Presenter: The Usual Participants
Title: Regular Meeting


Wednesday, March 8, 2017

Presenter: Steven Hassan M.Ed., LMHC, NCC
Title: Steven Hassan M.Ed., LMHC, NCC


Wednesday, March 1, 2017

Presenter: Michael Lamport Commons, Ph.D.
Title: Michael Lamport Commons, Ph.D.
Details: Michael Commons will present on some variables involved in cult behavior


Wednesday, January 25, 2017

Presenter: Michael Lamport Commons, Ph.D.
Title: Rescheduled
Details: The first is about why one needs developmental scales for almost all tests. Experts have to inform lawyers about the defensive of IQ, MMPI, etc that they are not developmentally well constructed so that competence id not clear. Mark among others is heavily involved with Autism and deals with the legal issues surrounding quality of services and needs.


Wednesday, January 18, 2017

Presenter: Tony Leys, Des Moines Register
Title: Journalism and Mental Health
Details: I’ve written regularly over the years about mental health, including how Iowans with mental illness become trapped in the criminal justice system. I’d be very interested in hearing thoughts from you and your colleagues on how the media could strengthen our coverage of these issues. Besides working for the newspaper here, I’m on the board of the national health-care journalism association, and we’re always seeking ways to improve our craft.


Wednesday, January 4, 2017

Presenter: Eric Y. Drogin and Leigh D. Hagan
Title: Expiration Dates: Can States Use Superseded Medical Standards to Establish Death Penalty Eligibility?
Details: After the Supreme Court of the United States (SCOTUS) prohibited the execution of persons with intellectual disabilities in Atkins v. Virginia (2002), a Texas “habeas court” found pursuant to the definition currently employed by the American Association on Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities (AAIDD, 2010) that Bobby Moore was ineligible for execution. The Texas Court of Criminal Appeals, however, held that Moore was “death-eligible” on the basis of the AAIDD’s 1992 intellectual disability definition, adopted in the Texas case of Ex Parte Briseno (2004). In Moore v. Texas, the SCOTUS is preparing to determine whether the use of outdated “medical standards” and non-clinical criteria violates the Eighth Amendment and contradicts guidelines recently established in Hall v. Florida (2014). PIPATL attendees will review and discuss evolving legal and scientific standards in capital jurisprudence.


Wednesday, December 14, 2016

Presenter: Regular Meeting
Title: Regular Meeting
Details: Regular Meeting


Wednesday, December 7, 2016

Presenter: PIPATL
Title: Connection trial


Wednesday, November 30, 2016

Presenter: Omar Sultan Haque, M.D, Ph.D.
Title: Dehumanization in Hospitals: Causes and Cures
Background: Dehumanization is a social and psychological phenomenon in which a distinctively human mind is not attributed to another person. Dehumanization is endemic in hospitals, as seen in the treatment of marginalized groups, including persons with psychiatric illness and substance use disorders. Why is this the case?
Details: By translating basic psychological science to clinical settings, I identify nine causes of dehumanization in hospitals resulting from common features of medical settings, the doctor-patient relationship, and routine clinical practices (deindividuating practices, impaired patient agency, impaired human prototype, power differences, inter-group biases, disgust, mechanization, dysregulated balancing of empathizing and analytic problem solving, technology that increases psychological distance). Knowing what some causes are of dehumanization in hospitals, how should hospitals be optimally re-designed, from a moral standpoint? I discuss when dehumanization in hospitals is potentially functional or not, and based on the overall framework developed, I articulate a novel research program, including principled research questions and predictions, that can provide an empirical foundation for reforms to hospital practices, and medical culture more generally.


Wednesday, November 23, 2016

Presenter: Dr. Stan Brodsky
Title: Research in Jury Selection
Details: research in Jury Selection


Wednesday, November 2, 2016

Presenter: Steven Hassan M.Ed., LMHC, NCC
Title: Undue Influence: An introduction to destructive c ults, mind control, brainwashing and deprogramming
Background: The media: the internet, press and even just day to day life are filled of stories of control. How can individual’s minds be manipulated through thought control, persuasion and brainwashing? Most mental health professionals have not had any specific training on the issue of undue influence, mind control, hypnosis, brainwashing and therefore are not equipped to identify victims, nor help them recognize, recover and heal from its effects. From abusive relationships with controlling, narcissistic people to multi-level marketing groups, to political cults, to trafficking, and even to extremist terrorist cults like ISIS.
Details: The most recent version of the American Psychiatric Association diagnostic manual, the DSM— 5, identifies this group of patients under a special category: Other Specified Dissociative Disorder 300.15 (F44.9). If one goes to page 305, number 2, one will read: “Identity disturbance due to prolonged and intense coercive persuasion: Individuals who have been subjected to intense coercive persuasion (e.g., brainwashing, thought reform, indoctrination while captive, torture, long-term political imprisonment, recruitment by sects/ cults or by terror organizations) may present with prolonged changes in, or conscious questioning of, their identity.”


Wednesday, October 19, 2016

Presenter: Steven Hassan M.Ed., LMHC, NCC
Title: Undue Influence: An introduction to destructive cults, mind control, brainwashing and deprogramming
Background: The media: the internet, press and even just day to day life are filled of stories of control. How can individual’s minds be manipulated through thought control, persuasion and brainwashing? Most mental health professionals have not had any specific training on the issue of undue influence, mind control, hypnosis, brainwashing and therefore are not equipped to identify victims, nor help them recognize, recover and heal from its effects. From abusive relationships with controlling, narcissistic people to multi-level marketing groups, to political cults, to trafficking, and even to extremist terrorist cults like ISIS.
Details: The most recent version of the American Psychiatric Association diagnostic manual, the DSM— 5, identifies this group of patients under a special category: Other Specified Dissociative Disorder 300.15 (F44.9). If one goes to page 305, number 2, one will read: “Identity disturbance due to prolonged and intense coercive persuasion: Individuals who have been subjected to intense coercive persuasion (e.g., brainwashing, thought reform, indoctrination while captive, torture, long-term political imprisonment, recruitment by sects/ cults or by terror organizations) may present with prolonged changes in, or conscious questioning of, their identity.”


Wednesday, October 12, 2016

Presenter: The ‘Health Research Authority’: Conducting Psycholegal Studies in the United Kingdom
Title: Professor John R. Williams, LL.B. Wales, LL.B. Cantab., Barrister-at-Law
Details: The National Health Service (NHS) established the Health Research Authority (HRA) in 2011 “to protect and promote the interests of patients and the public in health research, and to streamline the regulation of research.” The HRA has deployed over 80 Research Ethics Committees (RECs) across the United Kingdom, each consisting of as many as 18 members, one third of whom must be laypersons. RECs “safeguard the rights, safety, dignity, and well-being of research participants, independently of research sponsors.” This presentation addresses legal, ethical, and scientific perspectives on the HRA process and contrasts these with issues faced by colleagues conducting psycholegal studies in the United States.


Wednesday, October 5, 2016

Presenter: Eric Y. Drogin, J.D., Ph.D., ABPP
Title: If You Already Know, Why Ask? A Deposition Consultation Case Study.
Details: The classic expert witness deposition in civil or criminal matters consists of progressively aggressive questioning by opposing counsel, who hopes to score a decisive pretrial victory by exposing among other things the expert s deficient command of relevant facts, lack of familiarity with the professional literature, and poorly grounded professional opinion. That is not, however, the only way for opposing counsel to plot or conduct a deposition. This deposition consultation case study will provide one example of a rather different approach, and will highlight legal, ethical, and clinical considerations i n what participants will be encouraged to recognize as a distinct form of forensic service provision that is incompatible with the role of the testifying expert witness.


Wednesday, September 7, 2016

Presenter: Barry H. Roth, M.D.
Title: Torture: What is it and Why does it Matter?


Wednesday, July 6, 2016

Presenter: Miloslava Kozmova
Title: Executive Skills (Ego Capacities) in Non-Lucid Dreaming
Background: Last meeting before summer break!


Wednesday, June 29, 2016

Presenter: Michael Lamport Commons
Title: Crime, gangs, and terrorists differ in behavioral stage development ways
Background: Crime, gangs, and terrorists differ in behavioral stage development ways


Wednesday, June 22, 2016


Title: Regular Meeting
Background: Regular Meeting


Wednesday, June 15, 2016


Title: Regular Meeting
Background: Regular Meeting


Wednesday, June 8, 2016

Presenter: Richard Sobel, Ed.D.
Title: Update on Medical Privacy Issues
Background: Discussion of medical/health privacy issues including Medicare renumbering and update on body scans and searches at the airports.


Wednesday, June 1, 2016

Presenter: Richard Sobel
Title: Dynamics of Housing and Expansion Controversies around HMS and MMHC
Details: Discussion of controversies around HMS and MMHC expansion, including the community participation dynamics in the related housing developments.


Wednesday, May 11, 2016

Presenter: Chiara S. Haller PhD
Title: Mother bear: An common ethical dilemma with forensic pressures
Details: Teenage Patient referred for clinical neuropsych testing by her mother in order to get extended time for academic testing. Neuropsychologist reports difficulties in cognitive functioning. However, the difficulties do not warrant a DSM-V supported diagnosis, which leads to disappointment of the mother because her daughter will not receive extended time on academic testing.


Wednesday, May 4, 2016

Presenter: Mitzi White and Tom Gutheil
Title: Patient Suicide: Is Impulse the only factor?
Background: Suicide is becoming an increasing problem in the US and courts are beginning to look more closely at psychiatrist’s liability when a patient commit suicide. Studies of behavioral indicators of a patient’s susceptibility to committing suicide such as impulsivity will be reviewed and suggestions for the use of more valid measures and indicators will be made.


Wednesday, April 20, 2016


Title: General Meeting
Background: General Meeting


Wednesday, April 13, 2016

Presenter: Gordon Harper MD
Title: Alliance Formation, Mandated Reporting, Protective Ambiguity
Details: The interface between clinical care and child protection: a clinician’s view


Wednesday, April 6, 2016

Presenter: Steven Locke, MD
Title: Opportunities and Challenges in Implementing Telemental Health Programs (continuation from previous talk)
Background: Telemedicine offers opportunities to improve access to care for millions of patients facing barriers such as geography, weather, travel, childcare, illness and disability.
Details: Telemental health should be the poster child for telehealth because of the ability to deliver evidence-based psychotherapies by licensed and trained clinicians using secure videoconferencing to patients at home, minimizing stigma and maximizing convenience. A telemedicine-enabled behavioral health medical home facilitates collaborative care among PCPs, care managers, home health agencies and behavioral health providers. Technology-supported integrated care is a disruptive innovation that raises issues in the realms of quality, safety, privacy, liability, regulation and licensure. This session will be a case study of a Massachusetts company’s computer-guided program for clinician tele-delivered CBT for the collaborative care of depression.


Wednesday, March 30, 2016

Presenter: Barry Roth, MDA
Title: Torture in the Anthropocene
Background: Survivors are not the exception to the rule, but exceptional people who make the rule exceptionally clear. This draws from many streams: 1) reflections editing chapters of other authors; 2) over 2 decades of work with torture survivors; 3) formulated and presented in recent years.
Details: Human thoughts and acts are elemental forces of biblical proportions that impact the future of the Earth and create a new epoch of geological time: The Anthropocene Epoch. We require upgrades and updates to our definition of torture---stronger language to name, unmask and stop the crimes. Torture is a conspiracy crime of perpetrators under the color of authority, intent to break the human ties, bonds and connections which sustain survivors and underlie all culture and civilization. Torture cannot break these more powerful non-material forces which transcend space and time when humans choose to hold together. We have the force to do right. This ongoing state of a priori categorical imperative is our shared heritage and future. The 100 year span from the Armenian genocide and Nazi Holocaust to today’s crimes against humanity teaches a clear lesson. Unless we build and maintain serious structures of justice, we will face serious injustice. We can and must make a better definition to end torture. - Why: There is universal condemnation of torture while it is universally practiced. - What: A heuristic that transcends differences and synergizes power. - Who: Clinicians (especially mental health) and jurists (lawyers and courts). - Where: Local, regional and global “universal” - How: Thought, word, and acts--- vis-à-vis and published - When: Here and now


Wednesday, March 23, 2016

Presenter: Steven Locke MD and Tom Hunter
Title: Opportunities and Challenges in Implementing Telemental Health Programs
Background: Telemedicine offers opportunities to improve access to care for millions of patients facing barriers such as geography, weather, travel, childcare, illness and disability.
Details: Telemental health should be the poster child for telehealth because of the ability to deliver evidence-based psychotherapies by licensed and trained clinicians using secure videoconferencing to patients at home, minimizing stigma and maximizing convenience. A telemedicine-enabled behavioral health medical home facilitates collaborative care among PCPs, care managers, home health agencies and behavioral health providers. Technology-supported integrated care is a disruptive innovation that raises issues in the realms of quality, safety, privacy, liability, regulation and licensure. This session will be a case study of a Massachusetts company’s computer-guided program for clinician tele-delivered CBT for the collaborative care of depression.


Wednesday, March 16, 2016

Presenter: Steven Locke, MD. Chief Medical Officer. Department of Psychiatry, BIDMC, HMS and iHope Network, Inc.
Title: Opportunities and Challenges in Implementing Telemental Health Programs
Background: Telemedicine offers opportunities to improve access to care for millions of patients facing barriers such as geography, weather, travel, childcare, illness and disability. Telemental health should be the poster child for telehealth because of the ability to deliver evidence-based psychotherapies by licensed and trained clinicians using secure videoconferencing to patients at home, minimizing stigma and maximizing convenience.
Details: A telemedicine-enabled behavioral health medical home facilitates collaborative care among PCPs, care managers, home health agencies and behavioral health providers. Technology-supported integrated care is a disruptive innovation that raises issues in the realms of quality, safety, privacy, liability, regulation and licensure. This session will be a case study of a Massachusetts company’s computer-guided program for clinician tele-delivered CBT for the collaborative care of depression.


Wednesday, March 9, 2016

Presenter: Michael Lamport Commons and Kyle Gramer Featherston
Title: Understanding Value and Its Discounts in Static and Changing Schedules of Reinforcement: How it along with many other variables that are correlated with addiction and alcoholism.


Wednesday, March 2, 2016

Presenter: Barry Roth, M.D.
Title: Cross-Dimensional Evaluations of Addiction: “Hitting Bottom” and the Workplace
Background: A portion of this was presented in panel, “ADDICTION AND MENTAL HEALTH IN THE WORKPLACE: OPPORTUNITIES AND CHALLENGES”, JULY 14th , 2015 XXXIVth International Congress on Law and Mental Health Under the auspices of International Academy of Law and Mental Health, Sigmund Freud University, Vienna
Details: Recent fitness for duty evaluations and 4 decades of practice lead to a Substance Use Disorder (SUD) heuristic. While it touches upon drug testing, enforcement, and reviews of large populations; focus on the cross-cutting dimension of “hitting bottom” distinguishes this model. The choice is radical when a person consciously confronts the immediate and unmanageable threat to her/his survival: essentially, change for the better, or die. This watershed choice is the key to psychological management of the physical SUD’s, with legal, moral and spiritual consequences. To recover, the person sick from SUD must create a meaningful life---based in the ties and connections of given and received love of others. Unbiased, objective forensic evaluations require careful attention to interactive realms of evaluee, public authority, and treatment resources. Sensitive and sophisticated knowledge guides evaluation and requires attention to detail of syndromes and personality, along all Axes I, II (including denial and sociopathy), and III (medical illnesses); and attention to past official records, sanctions and rehabilitation. Even though professional functions that are compromised by SUD’s occur in less-than-perfect settings; the clear forensic statements of certainties (and their limits) can aide professionals and public alike.


Wednesday, February 24, 2016

Presenter: James Armontrout, Michael Lamport Commons, Ph.D., Sarthak Giri, B.S., Kyle Gramer Featherston, B.S; Thomas Gordon Gutheil, M.D
Title: Do Consult Psychiatrists, Forensic Psychiatrists, Psychiatry Trainees, and Healthcare Lawyers Differ in Determinations about Grey Area Decision Making Capacity Cases? Follow up on a Vignette-Based Survey
Details: Grey area decision making capacity evaluations can be complex even for experienced evaluators, and past research (such as Kim et al 2011) suggests that agreement between evaluators is not always high. To our knowledge, however, no study conducted thus far has contrasted the rates of agreement between groups of evaluators with different professional backgrounds. Under the mentorship of Dr. Tom Gutheil and Dr. Dave Gitlin I have carried out a survey project in which consult psychiatrists, forensic psychiatrists, psychiatry trainees, and healthcare lawyers answered questions related to decision making capacity for three vignettes representing “grey area” cases. In this talk I will present the results of this study and lead a discussion of the implications for training and clinical practice.


Wednesday, February 17, 2016

Presenter: Michael Stein J.D, Ph.D.
Title: Legal Capacity and Mental Disability: A Need for Cross-Disciplinary Dialogue
Background: The United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD) is the first human rights treaty of the twenty-first century, and the first one to specifically protect the rights of the world’s one billion persons with disabilities.
Details: One of the fundamental rights contained in the CRPD, and one that is emblematic of the paradigm shift intended by the treaty, is that of legal capacity: the equal right of persons with disabilities to make their own decisions in all aspects of life, including health care provision. At the same time, this right is also the least understood in terms of practice, and the most controversial. The speaker was privileged to have participated in the CRPD’s drafting and to have worked on implementing the treaty in over 40 countries. This talk will investigate and provoke discussions around involuntary confinement and treatment, a topic currently dominated by rights advocates but without consultation U upon oiling if with or lessons from health care providers.


Wednesday, February 10, 2016

Presenter: Alan M Jette, PT, MPH, Ph.D.
Title: Psychological Testing in the Service of Disability Determination
Background: The U.S. Social Security Administration (SSA) has the critical task of determining which applicants qualify for disability benefits, a task complicated by the lack of direct correlation between the presence of an impairment and the inability to work. State Disability Determination Service (DDS) examiners undertake the very complex task of reviewing and developing applicants’ files to determine which requests for disability benefits are justified.
Details: In 2012, the SSA provided benefits to nearly 15 million disabled adults and children through two disability programs. SSA disability determinations are based on the medical evidence and all evidence considered relevant by the examiners in an applicant’s case record. SSA asked the Institute of Medicine (IOM) to convene a committee of relevant experts to review selected psychological tests, including validity tests, and to provide guidance on the use of such testing in the adjudication of claims submitted to the SSA Disability Programs. The committee identified three elements of SSA’s disability determination process in which psychological testing could play a role: (1) identification of a “medically determinable impairment,” (2) evaluation of functional capacity for work, and (3) assessment of the validity of applicants’ psychological test results or self-reported symptoms. As discussed in my talk, the IOM committee found that the results of standardized psychological testing do provide information of value to each of the three elements.


Wednesday, February 3, 2016

Presenter: Regular Meeting
Title: Regular Meeting


Wednesday, January 27, 2016

Presenter: Regular Meeting
Title: Regular Meeting


Wednesday, January 20, 2016

Presenter: Eric Drogin J.D., Ph.D., ABPP and Carol Williams LL.B.
Title: The Duties to Warn and Protect in the Context of Forensic Mental Health Assessment: A Case Example
Details: Some version of the now-classic Tarasoff duties exists for mental health clinicians in every jurisdiction. The contours of these duties are familiar to everyone who sees patients or clients for the purpose of providing therapeutic or evaluative services. In the context of forensic mental health assessment, however, the interpretation and execution of these duties are complicated by considerations of attorney-client privilege, as described in the previously discussed California case of Elijah W. v. Superior Court of Los Angeles County (2013). PIPATL members will review and discuss a case that prominently features these issues.


Wednesday, January 13, 2016

Presenter: Ronald Abramson, MD
Title: A Critique of Current Public Policy Toward Addictive Drugs and a proposed resolution for the Mass Medical Society
Background: Current public policy toward addictive drugs by "banning them," restrictive means, and police action has failed to stem the flow of addictive drugs to our population. Anybody (except maybe physicians) who wants to procure these drugs can and do. Therefore, this public policy has failed to contain the adverse medical, psychological, and social consequences that follows from the use and abuse of these drugs.
Details: Because drug usage is in economic terms inelastic demand, current public policy has promoted black marketeering and associated criminal activity to satisfy this demand. This criminal activity has resulted in the proliferation of non-violent offenders remanded to prisons. This policy has also fostered disrespect and distrust of the government. New policy needs to be elaborated that assumes a medical not a police model for addictions which, after all, are medical, neurological, and psychiatric problems.


Wednesday, January 6, 2016

Presenter: Alan M Jette, PT, MPH, Ph.D.
Title: Psychological Testing in the Service of Disability Determination
Background: The U.S. Social Security Administration (SSA) has the critical task of determining which applicants qualify for disability benefits, a task complicated by the lack of direct correlation between the presence of an impairment and the inability to work. State Disability Determination Service (DDS) examiners undertake the very complex task of reviewing and developing applicants’ files to determine which requests for disability benefits are justified.
Details: In 2012, the SSA provided benefits to nearly 15 million disabled adults and children through two disability programs. SSA disability determinations are based on the medical evidence and all evidence considered relevant by the examiners in an applicant’s case record. SSA asked the Institute of Medicine (IOM) to convene a committee of relevant experts to review selected psychological tests, including validity tests, and to provide guidance on the use of such testing in the adjudication of claims submitted to the SSA Disability Programs. The committee identified three elements of SSA’s disability determination process in which psychological testing could play a role: (1) identification of a “medically determinable impairment,” (2) evaluation of functional capacity for work, and (3) assessment of the validity of applicants’ psychological test results or self-reported symptoms. As discussed in my talk, the IOM committee found that the results of standardized psychological testing do provide information of value to each of the three elements.


Wednesday, December 30, 2015

Presenter: Meeting cancelled
Title: Meeting cancelled


Wednesday, December 16, 2015

Presenter: Gordon Peakock Harper
Title: Clinical Ambiguity: An Endangered Species?


Wednesday, December 9, 2015

Presenter: Michael Lamport Commons
Title: The role of experts in reducing terrorism and crime
Details: The role of experts in reducing terrorism and crime


Wednesday, December 2, 2015

Presenter: Eric Drogin, Barry Roth and Thomas Gordon Gutheil
Title: How to handle scheduling conflicts in testimony at deposition and/or trial
Details: Open discussion at an 11:00 meeting to be followed by a questionnaire survey.


Wednesday, November 25, 2015

Presenter: Michael Lamport Commons
Title: What constitutes delusions in non-psychotic people, continued
Details: What constitutes delusions in non-psychotic people, continued


Wednesday, November 18, 2015

Presenter: Michael Lamport Commons
Title: What constitutes delusions in non-psychotic people
Details: Michael Lamport Commons will present very early ideas of what constitutes delusions in non-psychotic people.


Wednesday, November 11, 2015

Presenter: Mitzi White and Thomas Gordon Gutheil
Title: Competence to represent oneself in court
Details: Competence to represent oneself in court


Wednesday, November 4, 2015

Presenter: James Tyler Carpenter, Ph.D.; FAACP
Title: Suggestions for Improving Efficiency, Reliability and Validity of Disability Adjudications Psychological Injury and the Law
Background: For the well-trained In-House Medical Psychiatric/Psychological Consultant, the challenge of adjudicating disability cases poses a variety of interrelated questions of reliability, validity, and efficiency.
Details: What is essentially a civil-forensic process takes place in a context of evolving models of behavioral health, systems, data gathering, applied clinical science, policy and economics, and forensic reasoning that constitutes a predictive judgment. The data required, the data available, the constraints on assessment tools and psychometrics, as well as the time such frameworks allow, raise questions about the ways in which the consultant can simultaneously maximize the available evidence in ways that can also produce reliable, valid, and predictive adjudications. Systems in place both facilitate and offer the basis for possible efficiencies. This paper will lay out the framework and practice, some approaches to thinking about such factors as they apply to best practice assessments, as well as raise some questions about the ways in which contemporary practices may be improved.


Wednesday, October 28, 2015

Presenter: D KNUDSON-GONZALEZ
Title: Medico-legal implications in the use of a telephone consultation service that addresses perinatal depression
Background: The use of medical “curbside” consultation has been in practice for many years but has recently become formalized under the integrated care model. For consultants, providing recommendations for patients that they have not personally evaluated has raised malpractice liability concerns.
Details: The objective of this presentation is to discuss the Massachusetts Child Psychiatry Access Program for Moms (MCPAP for Moms) model of telephone consultation, discuss the elements of malpractice law, and provide risk management strategies to avoid liability. Methods : A search of the existing medical-legal literature was conducted using PubMed, Hollis and LexisNexis with a combination of the following terms: “malpractice”, “liability”, “consultation”, “curbside”, and “integrated care”. Results : No case law was found for malpractice claims in integrated care models in this literature search. Although there is no legal precedent that might inform the risk of a telephone consultation service, case law on malpractice claims in informal consultation processes has relied on whether or not a doctor-patient relationship was established. Conclusions : Malpractice risks associated with a telephone consultation service appear to be minimal. In order to avoid liability, there should be a clear understanding of the consultant’s role, avoid providing specific advice and direction that would result in indirect care, and consider documenting the consult process to show that it was performed with reasonable care.


Wednesday, October 21, 2015


Title: No meeting
Background: The annual meeting of the American Academy of Psychiatry and the Law in Florida is 10/21 - 10/25.


Wednesday, October 14, 2015

Presenter: Barry Roth, MD
Title: You Know It Is Torture When There Is Official Terror: Torture and Criminal Insanity
Background: Criminal Insane, as in the Torturer becomes criminally insane as the perpetrate torture. Definition of the problem: In preparation for UNESCO Conference, Bioethics, Medical Ethics & Health Law.
Details: Asking survivors of torture, “How did you survive?” led to a powerful heuristic. Torture is a crime of specific intent; namely, an attempt to break the human ties and bonds that sustained survivors. A priori, these shared non-material connections of social contract are the force we have to do right. Understanding that the criminal intent of torture aims to destroy civilized ties improves current torture definitions and protocols. Official state torture and terrorism are synonymous in bio-psychosocial and ethical dimensions. Torture states and terrorists both use systematic means to instill terror---overpowering fear to coerce and intimidate. Under the color of authority, states use terror to torture; doing so, states perform terrorist acts. Criminal acts of state performed under the color of authority derive from and display mental illness. Torture is one dehumanizing meme embedded in violent criminal insanity. Torture is non-random; it is not a stand-alone, one-off or isolated, aberration. We also confront official terror in the “counterterrorism” “war on terror”: in official lies, secrecy, censorship; surveillance, propaganda, deception, misinformation, drones and kill lists. Sane ties of civil society oppose, resist, transform and supersede violent intimidation and coercion to heal both traumatized individual persons and our suffering culture.


Wednesday, October 7, 2015

Presenter: The Usual Participants
Title: Hoffman report discussion


Wednesday, September 30, 2015

Presenter: Professor John R. Williams, LL.B. Wales, LL.B. Cantab., Barrister-at-Law, Aberystwyth University
Title: Discharge from Institutional Mental Health Care: An International Perspective
Background: Persons with mental illness are often discharged from institutional care with little understanding of conditions of release, requirements for variably supervised residence in the community at large, or prospects for re-commitment. Failure to plan for and explain aftercare options has a predictably negative upon quality of life and opportunities for psychiatric rehabilitation.
Details: This presentation addresses legal, ethical, and professional practice perspectives on an issue of direct relevance for forensic mental health professionals. Attendees will explore a variety of international approaches to this topic and discuss recommendations for professional education and statutory reform.


Wednesday, September 23, 2015

Presenter: The Usual Participants
Title: Readings for those not celebrating Yom Kippur


Wednesday, September 16, 2015

Presenter: The Usual Participants
Title: Article on suicide markers discuss


Wednesday, September 9, 2015

Presenter: The usual participants
Title: First meeting of the new academic year!
Details: plan the year, topic, guests


Wednesday, July 15, 2015

Presenter: Barry Roth
Title: Barry Roth talk


Wednesday, July 8, 2015

Presenter: Dr Gemma Edwards-Smith MBBS FRANZCP
Title: Civil Forensic Psychiatry and disability Claims –Bridging the GAP
Background: Rising costs of mental health disability claims present a challenge to private disability insurers with significant issues in sustainability of this product and potential costs for consumers. Traditional independent medical examinations focus on providing expert written opinion to the insurer.
Details: We have been implementing an early intervention model aimed at assisting in identifying barriers to recovery and return to work early in the life of a claim. Feedback on 12 months of this program which I have expanded nationwide will be presented.


Wednesday, July 1, 2015

Presenter: Thomas Gordon Gutheil
Title: Voir dire
Background: Dr. Gutheil will go over the the motions about excluding my testimony --> voir dire as promised for discussion.


Wednesday, June 24, 2015

Presenter: Usual Participants
Title: Regular Meeting


Wednesday, June 17, 2015

Presenter: Usual Participants
Title: Regular Meeting


Wednesday, June 10, 2015

Presenter: Usual Participants
Title: Regular Meeting


Wednesday, May 6, 2015

Presenter: Frank Dattilio (c.c.) and Eric Drogin
Title: Frank Dattilio (c.c.) and Eric Drogin


Wednesday, April 29, 2015

Presenter: Donald Meyer M.D. and Eric Drogin J.D., Ph.D., ABPP
Title: North Carolina State Board of Dental Examiners v. Federal Trade Commission: Its Impact upon Personal Liability for Regulatory Board Members
Background: On February 25, 2015, in a 6-3 decision authored by Justice Kennedy, the Supreme Court of the United States upheld the Federal Trade Commission’s (FTC) decision finding that the North Carolina Board of Dental Examiners (Board), although a state agency, was not exempt from federal antitrust laws when it sent 47 official cease-and-desist letters to non-dentist teeth whitening service providers.
Details: In doing so, the Court made clear that the antitrust laws would apply to—and the state action exemption would not protect—activities of state agencies or boards made up of market participants, absent active state supervision of the Board’s challenged conduct. The Supreme Court affirmed the United States Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit’s opinion upholding the FTC`s ruling that state-action immunity was inapplicable. PIPATL members will discuss impact of this decision for personal liability for regulatory board members.


Wednesday, April 22, 2015

Presenter: Patricia Westmoreland, M.D. Affiliation: Eating Recovery Center, Denver, CO, Denver Health ACUTE (consultant) and University of Colorado (adjunct faculty).
Title: Certification of Patients with Life-threatening Anorexia Nervosa
Background: Anorexia Nervosa is the psychiatric illness with the highest mortality rate. The cultural ideal of thinness, along with the impaired judgment and cognition due to starvation, often result in patients with anorexia nervosa resisting treatment. For a subset of patients with anorexia nervosa, involuntary treatment may be lifesaving.
Details: Between April 2012 and October 2014, 61/1233 patients (4.9%of patients at Eating Recovery Center in Denver) were certified. 34%of these patients were transferred from Denver Health ACUTE (a specialized unit providing life-saving medical treatment for the most severely compromised eating disorder patients in the country). 89% of patients waived their right to a hearing. Of the remaining patients, all of those who contested their certification were ultimately certified. 38% of certified patients successfully completed treatment. Alternate dispositions included premature termination of treatment due to insurance concerns and administrative discharge. For 21% (n = 12) of patients, certification was terminated as involuntary treatment was found to be futile. Conclusion: Patients with anorexia nervosa who are the most medically ill frequently require involuntary treatment. The majority of patients stipulate to their certifications, and many successfully complete treatment, yet there is a minority of patients for whom involuntary treatment appears futile, and for whom palliative care might be considered.


Wednesday, April 15, 2015

Presenter: Gangqin Li, MD and Michael Lamport Commons; Ph.D.
Title: Predicting Criminality
Background: This study used six instruments to predict criminality. The instruments are based on six orthogonal factors including social-perspective-taking skill, strength of attachment relationship, impulsivity, anger, depression, and lying.
Details: All the factors were pretested by factor and Rasch (1980) analysis. Social perspective taking skill was assessed using Helper-person. A attachment inventory derived from Shaver’s Experience of Close Relationship (ECR) used to test attachment relationship. Impulsivity and Risk were assessed with items from Eysenck’s I7 Scale and Dickman’s Dysfunctional Impulsivity Scale. Anger was assessed with items selected from several related anger scales such as State-Trait Anger Expression Scale, Multidimensional Anger Inventory and Novaco’s Anger Scale. Depression was tested using an instrument constructed by Commons. Lying was also constructed from a number of instruments. Two groups were used. The “Criminal” Group consisted of prisoners in a Massachusetts county jail and “Normal men” found from about 30 Listservs. Rasch (1960) person scores were obtained for the six variables. The results were significant. The contributions of combinations of the different variables will be discussed


Wednesday, April 8, 2015

Presenter: Deborah Knudson González, MD. Department of Psychiatry, Division of Women’s Mental Health, Brigham and Women’s Hospital.
Title: “When Expecting Doesn’t Go as Expected: Infanticide and Suicide in the Perinatal Period”
Background: During the perinatal period, some women are susceptible to worsening mood symptoms and, in the most extreme cases, psychosis.
Details: In these women, the risk of suicide and infanticide is high. An important role for an expert witness is to function as an educator. As there is a general lack of knowledge and understanding related to perinatal mental illness, this role becomes particularly important in cases where perinatal mental illnesses impacts a woman’s understanding and behavior. An overview of the most common perinatal mental illnesses as they relate to risk factors associated with infanticide and suicide in the perinatal period will be presented. These risks will be illustrated by referring to relevant legal cases of infanticide as examples.


Wednesday, April 1, 2015

Presenter: Eric Y. Drogin J.D., Ph.D.
Title: Representing the Forensic Clinician: A Case Example
Background: The forensic clinician is almost invariably partnered with counsel at each stage of court-related proceedings, as evaluations are performed, reports are written, and testimony is proffered.
Details: Ongoing solicitation of counsel’s perspective on the legal issues in a particular matter must not evolve into reliance upon counsel for legal advice about the conduct of one’s own forensic practice. Counsel is the litigant’s attorney, not the clinician’s. During the course of this presentation, participants will review a case example in which a child custody evaluator was compelled to seek representation when significant legal as well as ethical concerns arose in the course of providing forensic mental health services.


Wednesday, March 25, 2015

Presenter: Barry Roth M.D.
Title: What Do We Mean by “Peer Review”?
Background: The term “peer review” has been attached to several distinct but related notions within the behavioral sciences, including (1) elective clinical discussions with colleagues; (2) administrative enforcement and quality assurance; (3) “refereed” publications; (4) precatory forensic practice guidelines; and (5) multiply authored forensic reports.
Details: Peer review—afforded minimal attention to date in the professional forensic literature—can be a useful process for mental health experts, as long as care is taken to account for the effects of various legal privileges (or the lack thereof). Participants will be invited to consider how peer review factors into attempts to draw the line regarding “bias” in forensic practice, and to consider what elements within the forensic community are optimally qualified to define and act upon such issues.


Wednesday, March 18, 2015


Title: No Meeting 3/18 due to 26th Annual L. Lee Hasenbush Visiting Lectureship
Details: 26th Annual L. Lee Hasenbush Visiting Lectureship


Wednesday, March 11, 2015

Presenter: Sagun Giri, B. A., Research Assistant, Dare Institute and Michael Lamport Commons, Ph.D., Assistant Professor, Harvard Medical School
Title: Reinforced Correct Answers To Next Stage Problems Produced the Highest Stage Performance In Non-Literates Found In The World
Background: As background for the talk and paper tomorrow, here is a very short argument for the relevance to Expert Witnesses. Often psychological testing is used in competence evaluation to stand trial, insanity defense and for wills and testaments among other things. The attached paper attacks all present psychological testing measures for assessing competence in terms of “Smarts.” The caveats also extend to interviews. The uselessness is especially true for people from non-dominant cultures. Even for standard educated people as the articles sent earlier, the r’s for the predictive validity is very low, .25
Details: Competence is often thought to be situational and content-dominant. However, this paper argues that with training and reinforcements, one can achieve higher level of competence than what they show on a single shot testing. This argues against the position that competence varies a good deal with culture and education.


Wednesday, March 4, 2015

Presenter: Harold J. Bursztajn, M.D., Associate Clinical Professor of Psychiatry, BIDMC Department of Psychiatry of HMS
Title: Physician Know Thyself to Help and Heal
Background: From the (1939-1945) Shoah`s times of catastrophe and great moral hazard to today`s (2015) ethical challenges to clinician
Details: I will present ongoing research on how physicians and other health care workers do their ethical best in times of great moral hazard, community catastrophe, and faced with tragic choices and decision making under conditions of uncertainty using an awareness of one`s own autobiography, including remembering one`s own original motivations for the practice of medicine. I will also consider how knowing oneself can be helpful in forensic psychiatric practice relative to the evaluation of trauma, resilience, and diminished capacity. This presentation is one of a series, the next of which will also be a presentation at the Flexner Dean`s Lecture Series at Vanderbilt University School of Medicine on Monday, March 9, 2015.


Wednesday, February 25, 2015

Presenter: Ganqin Li
Title: Reviewing Dr. Ganqin Li`s time in the US
Background: Next Wednesday`s meeting will be the last day for Ganqin Li, our visiting member from China.
Details: Gangqin has agreed to review her time here putting together her dissertation and other shorter pieces and being aided and mentored by Program members, as well as presenting at AAPL as a Program member.


Wednesday, February 4, 2015

Presenter: Eric Y. Drogin, J.D., Ph.D., Thomas G. Gutheil, MD, et al
Title: "Discussion of SJC`s new reasonable doubt instruction"
Background: GLOBE STAFF JANUARY 26, 2015 - The state’s highest court Monday reworked the definition of reasonable doubt used in Massachusetts courthouses since 1850 when then-Chief Justice Lemuel Shaw concluded jurors must be convinced of a person’s guilt to a “moral certainty.’’
Details: In a unanimous ruling, the Supreme Judicial Court said that judges in every new criminal trial must no longer use the 165-year-old formulation — known to lawyers as the Webster instruction or charge — of the seemingly easy to understand, but hard to explain, concept of reasonable doubt.


Wednesday, January 21, 2015

Presenter: Frank Dattilio
Title: Evaluation of the Man who Threatened the President of United States with Death
Details: Presentation on the man who he evaluated who threatened the President of United States with death.


Wednesday, January 14, 2015

Presenter: Lino Faccini, Ph.D. N.Y.S. Licensed Psychologist
Title: Autism, Psychopathology and Deficient Eriksonian Psychosocial Development as contributors to Criminality
Details: Presentation of the three part model of autism-based deficits, psychopathology and negatively resolved Eriksonian deficits directly contributing to cases of terroristic threats, train stealing, and possible mass shootings.


Wednesday, January 7, 2015

Presenter: Michael Lamport Commons, Ph.D.
Title: How to Deal with Multivariate Issues
Details: We resume January 7th, and Michael Commons will present on a follow-up of his last talk about how to deal with multivariate issues.


Wednesday, December 31, 2014


Title: No Meeting


Wednesday, December 24, 2014


Title: No Meeting


Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Presenter: Richard Sobel
Title: Pursuing Fundamental Rights: In Words and in Deeds


Wednesday, November 5, 2014

Presenter: Mitzi White PhD, Jd; Tom Gutheil MD
Title: Defendant self-representation: a model
Details: A proposed model for forensic practitioners in evaluating a defendant who chooses to self-represent.


Wednesday, October 22, 2014


Title: No Meeting
Details: We have cancelled the Wednesday meeting, 10/22, as a number of members will be at AAPL in Chicago; we resume on October 29th.


Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Presenter: Lino Faccini, Ph.D. N.Y.S. Licensed Psychologist
Title: Old Me New Me Treatment for Complex CoMorbid Disorders, Internalized Imaginary Companions, and Sex Offending with a Person with Mild Intellectual Disabilities
Background: A Complex Case of Internalized Imaginary Companions contributing to Sex Offending in a Person with a Mild Intellectual Disability
Details: Presentation on the application of the Old Me New Me treatment model was effective as the core treatment modality in treating various clinical comorbid disorders, and internalized imaginary companions that contributed to sex offending.


Wednesday, October 1, 2014

Presenter: Professor John R. Williams, Degree: LL.B. Wales, LL.B. Cantab., Barrister-at-Law; Affiliation: Aberystwyth University; jow@aber.ac.uk
Title: Force-Feeding in Institutional Settings: Legal and Psychiatric Perspectives
Background: The issue of force-feeding is a contentious one in the United Kingdom as it is elsewhere throughout the world. Courts have rendered numerous high-profile decisions relating to the force-feeding of incarcerated criminals, patients detained under the Mental Health Act, and persons who are otherwise deemed to lack the capacity to make basic life decisions for themselves.
Details: Hunger strikes conducted as a means of political protest are a common focus of such litigation. Force-feeding raises a broad range of legal and ethical as well as clinical issues. Domestic law, the European Convention on Human Rights, and other manifestations of international law reflect attempts to balance a range of competing interests, and whether this has provided doctors with sufficient clarity is doubtful. Participants will be invited to consider the implications of force-feeding from a multidisciplinary comparative perspective.


Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Presenter: Gangqin Li, Ph. D candidate, Sichuan University, Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center
Title: Predicting Criminality: Social Perspective Taking, Attachment Relationship, Anger, Impulsivity and Depression.
Background: This study is aimed at constructing instruments that predict criminality. The instruments are based on six orthogonal factors including social-perspective-taking skill, strength of attachment relationship, impulsivity, risk, anger and depression.
Details: All the factors were pretested by factor and Rasch (1980) analysis. Social perspective taking skill was assessed using Helper-person and Caregiver instruments, assessing stage of taking another person’s perspective, taking care of another person’s feelings and emotions. Shaver’s Experience of Close Relationship (ECR) was used to test attachment relationship. Impulsivity and Risk were assessed with items from Eysenck’s I7 Scale and Dickman’s Dysfunctional Impulsivity Scale. Anger was assessed with items selected from several related anger scales such as State-Trait Anger Expression Scale, Multidimensional Anger Inventory and Novaco’s Anger Scale. Depression was tested using an instrument constructed by Commons. These measurements were compared between people who have committed at least one crime and those who have never committed a crime. We predict that criminals have lower social-perspective-taking skill, are more avoidant and anxious in their close relationship, impulsive, angrier and with more depression symptoms. After multiple regression and Rasch Analysis, different weight can be allocated to different factors to allow constructing an equation for evaluating the crime risk.


Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Presenter: Patrice Marie Miller, Ed.D. Harvard Medical School and Salem State University Leonard Sidney Miller, Ph.D., University of California, Berkeley
Title: Changing Single Subject Data into Group Designs for Showing Intervention Effectiveness
Background: For longitudinal interventions, the analysis of effectiveness of each component depends on find which “improvements” work. These are found from using a group of interventions.
Details: A few things are important: 1) Determining to which task sequence the task belongs. For Developmentally based interventions, finding the Order of Hierarchical Complexity (OHC) of the tasks in which the participant meets the aim; 2) Having an intervention group and a control Group; 3) Using the most powerful statistical analysis to find the contribution of each component. The best way to do that is to use multiple regression analysis. The use of individual “chart” data will be used to illustrate this.


Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Presenter: Daniel Patrik Görtz, Department of Sociology. University of Lund
Title: The Societal Attractors Towards Flatter Organization in the 21st Century In Medicine, Law, Business, Public Administration and Politics
Background: Organizations in general are likely to become flatter in the 21st century, which also affects the future of institutions of medical care, psychiatric care and forensics. This trend can be seen already today.
Details: This paper suggests eight the long-term “attractors” rather than linear, short-terms trends that lead to flatter organizations. Organizations and the need for management and bureaucracy are discussed from an informational perspective. It is argued that management and hierarchical bureaucracy are needed because information about specific behaviors needs to be processed by organizations. Then the eight attractors (long-term trends) are presented: 1. the cultural evolution of information management, 2. scientific support for new forms of management, 3. social media technology, 4. social innovation of new management forms, 5. new production and distribution chains, 6. the strong growth of the world market, 7. the radically disruptive technological development, 8. the re-integration of business, politics and civil sphere. Some consequences in medicine, psychiatry and forensics are presented, including the new forms treatment in psychiatry where psychiatric treatment is likely to become increasingly merged with the real everyday life situations of the patients.


Wednesday, July 9, 2014

Presenter: Gemma Edwards-Smith, MBBS, FRANZCP, CEO
Title: The Western Front: Psychiatry at the Intersection of Southeast Asia and Australia: Civil Forensic Psychiatry in a Remote Cty
Background: Dr. Gemma Edwards-Smith, MBBS FRANZCP, CEO Western Psychiatry, Perth Western Australia, Tel 0061400486735, Email gemma@westernpsychiatry.com.au
Details: Wednesday 9 July 2014, 11am.


Wednesday, July 9, 2014

Presenter: Dr. Robert Bernat
Title: Psychiatry, the Law and the Prevention of More Sandy Hooks
Background: This Seminar, entitled Psychiatry, the Law and the Prevention of More Sandy Hooks, is aimed directly at the weakest link in the process of providing enhanced security for school children in the post Sandy Hook era, a link which could, I believe, be greatly strengthened through future efforts of the Harvard psychiatry faculty and PIPATL members.
Details: Wednesday 9 July 2014, 10am intend to introduce seminar participants to the three legs of the school security tripod, namely 1) improving intelligence to intercept active shooters prior to an attack, 2) hardening the target to slow intruders and 3) reducing the response times of first responders, and explain how I came to develop such concept through analysis of both failures of school security plans and one or more recent successes in heading off tragedy. The ultimate goal is the development of a compendium of best practices in coordination with the federal task force created in the aftermath of Sandy Hook, agencies of various states and local school district task forces. Such compendium is also the central focus of Safer Schools First, the not-for-profit which I founded in May of 2014. Further information with respect to Safer Schools First may be found on its website at saferschoolsfirst.com. After the introductory portion of the seminar, I anticipate that seminar participants would have a working knowledge of the security issues confronting school districts as well as private and parochial schools with respect to active shooter and related incidents. The Seminar would then focus upon the difficult issue of the first and weakest leg of the tripod, namely the gathering of intelligence which includes the “See Something … Say Something Program.” It is in this area I think participants may be able to make valuable contributions as the development of a “See Something … Say Something Program” is currently amorphous and no one is sufficiently confident in its components to produce guidelines capable of being operationalize in the field. I feel the Harvard faculty and PIPATL members would be well positioned to make a substantial contribution toward creating such guidelines and hope that this seminar would prove an important first step toward accomplishing that end.


Wednesday, May 21, 2014

Presenter: David M. Benjamin, Ph.D
Title: "Spiceophrenia" Note: Meeting Room Change - Room 651 (NOT 340)
Background: Adverse Psychiatric Effects reported for Synthetic Cannabinoids including Spice, K-2, Cathinones and other CB-1 Receptor Agonists
Details: The structures of synthetic cannabinoids differ markedly from the structures of naturally-occurring cannabinoids that are found in the marijuana plant, Cannabis Sativa. Currently, most synthetic cannabinoids fall into one of seven major structural groups: naphthoylindoles (JWH-018, JWH-073, and JWH-398), naphthoylmethylindoles, naphthoylpyrroles, naphthylmethylindines, phenylacetylindoles (or benzoylindoles) (e.g., JWH-250), cyclohexylphenols (e.g., CP 47,497), and classical cannabinoids (e.g., HU-210). In contrast to the naturally-occurring cannabinoids which have a dibenzopyran nucleus contain no N in their structure. Spice is often comprised of cathinones like 4 methyl methcathinone (MMC), methylone, (3,4-methylenedioxy-N-methylcathinone, (beta-k MDMA), and MDPV (3,4-methylenedioxypyrovalerone). These substances produce highly toxic adverse CNS effects often leaving the patient with long-term, unabating, psychiatric problems. Chemistry, pharmacology, psychopharmacology, clinical presentations and management will be discussed.


Wednesday, May 14, 2014

Presenter: The Usual Participants
Title: Regular Meeting


Wednesday, May 7, 2014

Presenter: The Usual Participants
Title: Regular Meeting
Details: Probably no meeting due to APA


Wednesday, April 30, 2014

Presenter: The Usual Participants
Title: Regular Meeting


Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Presenter: Gordon Harper, M.D.
Title: “Update on Munchausen by Proxy: Medical Sleuthery, Consensus Development, Premature Judicialization”
Background: In the late 1970s Meadow described Munchausen Syndrome by Proxy (aka Factitious Disorder by Proxy, Pediatric Falsification Syndrome, and, more recently, Medical Child Abuse).
Details: Since then, those caring for potentially affected children have had to reckon with newly described medical syndromes predictably generative of medical non-consensus; by varying taxonomies, in DSM and elsewhere; by child protective services under-resourced medically and otherwise; and by swings of the pendula of public opinion and public policy between child protection and family support. This talk will review these trends and summarize an approach to this important but challenging clinical-legal entity.


Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Presenter: Dominic Sisti, PhD
Title: “Are Persons with Borderline Personality Disorder Blameworthy? A Sliding Scale of Accommodation and Exculpation”
Background: Borderline personality disorder (BPD) is a complex mental disorder that straddles the line between psychosis and neurosis. As such, questions about the moral and legal responsibility of persons with BPD are especially vexing.
Details: Persons suffering with borderline personality disorder typically are impulsive and suffer from impaired volition. They also lack a stable sense of self. Nonetheless, persons with borderline personality disorder can hold long-term, stable preferences—often related to discontinuing particular problematic behaviors—and they have a degree of capacity that creates prima facie conditions for holding them ethically and legally responsible. However, this limited capacity often falls short in smoothly accommodating day-to-day relationships. I argue that while a certain degree of accommodation is appropriate for persons with BPD, the diagnosis of BPD does not by itself provide sufficient grounds for voiding responsibility for criminal acts. Using a hierarchical theory of autonomy recognizing first- and second-order volition, I propose a sliding scale be used to ascertain the degree to which a person with BPD should be excused, if at all.


Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Presenter: Frank M. Dattilio. Ph.D., ABPP
Title: The Case of the Autoarousal Female Scientist Stalker
Background: This is an interesting case of a Ph.D. scientist who stalked the head of the NIH after she believed that he was interested in her romantically upon rejecting her grant application. An assessment was conducted to rule out violence risk and to qualify her mental health diagnosis in the Federal Court system.
Details: Adjusting penalties for crimes committed by youths has been known for hundreds of years, as exemplified by the 10th century statute of Anglo-Saxon king Aethelstan, which provided that no person younger than 15 years should be slain for robbery “except he should make resistance or flee.” This presentation offers a practice-oriented overview of juvenile decertification examinations—known in some jurisdictions as “waiver” examinations—with particular attention to preparation, data collection, data interpretation, and communication of results.


Wednesday, April 2, 2014

Presenter: Charu Tara Tuladhar and Michael Lamport Commons
Title: Planning One’s Own Development within the Developmental Behavior Analytic Therapy
Background: In the Developmental Behavior Analytic Therapy, we have described the basic approach as presented by Charu Tara Tuladhar. This presentation adds what individuals are taught in this therapy to help them achieve their goals.
Details: There are two areas in which individuals are coached: a) how to plan one’s future and b) how to design external contingencies to accomplish the plans. This is accomplished by follow the standard behavioral and precision teaching rules of thumb including small steps and charting progress. Individuals are assisted in understanding their ultimate goals and the processes needed to achieve them through training in social perspective taking. The intervention also requires organizing environments that push one along the steps that lean one to one’s goals. The behavioral Model of Hierarchical Complexity is used to explicitly teach the individuals the developmental sequence required for designing the steps to attain their goals. The substeps within that order of hierarchical complexity are also taught. This intervention causes behavioral stage change in social perspective-taking skills.


Wednesday, March 26, 2014

Presenter: Ross E. Cheit, J.D, Ph.D
Title: Misapplying Child-Suggestibility Research: Lessons from the Kelly Michaels Case
Background: A prominent group of academic psychologists intervened in the Kelly Michaels case in New Jersey in 1993, arguing that recent laboratory experiments proved that the children’s testimony was unreliable.
Details: Michaels’s conviction was overturned and “taint hearings” became part of the legal system. A comprehensive analysis of the trial transcript reveals fundamental flaws in the ways in which child-suggestibility research was applied in this case. There are significant implications of those findings on children as witnesses.


Wednesday, March 19, 2014

Presenter: Sydney Levine
Title: Is the "Presumption of Innocence" an Original Sin?
Background: Harold Bursztajn M.D will introduce and discuss implications for potential pitfalls in the forensic psychiatric evaluation of mens rea and consideration of the Hilary Putnam principle of the benefit of the doubt as a potential remedy
Details: Philosophers and psychologists have long been interested in deontic judgments of cases of double effect -- morally charged scenarios in which one action has two effects and only one of those effects is intended (eg: Foot, 1967; Greene, Sommerville, Nystrom, Darley & Cohen, 2001). Cases of double effect have been critical test-cases for the study of moral judgment, giving us insight into how our moral faculty functions. Strikingly, what has gone largely unnoticed in research on double effect scenarios is that two possible intention structures are equally compatible with the causal structure of the case. To solve this poverty-of-the-stimulus problem, we propose that subjects deploy a *good intention prior*, namely, if the action of an agent has two effects – one good and one bad – the agent intends the good effects of her action and does not intend the bad effects. We report two studies (one with adults, one with preschoolers aged three to five years old) that provide evidence for the use of this prior to disambiguate between intention structures in double-effect scenarios.


Wednesday, March 12, 2014

Presenter: The Usual Participants
Title: Regular Meeting


Wednesday, March 5, 2014

Presenter: Deborah Knudson González, M.D.
Title: “Potential role for Forensic Psychiatry in Assisted Reproduction”
Background: Assisted Reproduction has remained largely unregulated in the United States, leaving clinics the opportunity to create their own policies about who they accept as patients. The American Society for Reproductive Medicine (ASRM) has created guidelines for their accredited clinics to follow. These guidelines do not include screening recommendations but suggest that the doctor take into account the welfare of the future child.
Details: Fertility doctors might feel ill-equipped to determine who might be a fit parent and under which circumstances parenting would be permissible/denied. This becomes particularly challenging when faced with treating women who are mentally ill and seeking to become single mothers. Clinical examples in which this issue arises will be discussed as well as the potential role for forensic psychiatry evaluations in this setting. Ethical/legal issues such as: the right to procreate, physician autonomy, duty of care-“Do no harm”, fitness to parent, discriminatory practices under state law, discrimination under the ADA, and foreseeability of future harm will also be discussed.


Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Presenter: Richard Sobel
Title: The Impact of `School Security` on the Health of the Learning Environment


Wednesday, January 8, 2014

Presenter: Note the NEW ROOM - MMHC Room 340
Title: PIPATL resumes - first meeting of the New Year
Background: Room 340 on the 3rd floor of MMHC, left from the elevator and all the way down the hall.


Wednesday, January 1, 2014


Title: No Meeting this Week
Background: Happy New Year!
Details: We resume meeting January 8, 2014. Please note the new and improved meeting location.


Thursday, December 26, 2013


Title: No Meeting this Week
Background: Merry Christmas!
Details: We resume meeting January 8, 2014.


Wednesday, October 9, 2013

Presenter: Ekaterina Pivovarova, Ph.D.
Title: Malingering Assessment of Psychopatholoy (MAP): A Structured Guide to Improved Decision-Making
Background: Determination of malingering has long been considered an essential feature of forensic evaluations. The bulk of the research has focused on development of new and improved measures of response style. Despite the rigorous research on malingering instruments, final determination about response style is still ultimately predicated upon clinical judgment.
Details: Thus far, despite the general acceptance of tools used to guide clinical decision making, no methods for structuring clinical judgments about malingering exist. My aim was to develop and provide initial validation for the Malingering Assessment of Psychopathology (MAP), an instrument to guide decision making about malingering using observations from experts in the field and the literature on correlates of malingering. My discussion will focus on the reliability and validity of the MAP and its utility for improving clinical decision making by psychologists and psychiatrist.


Thursday, October 3, 2013

Presenter: The Usual Participants
Title: Regular Meeting


Wednesday, September 4, 2013


Title: Hooray! First regular PIPATL Meeting after the summer break
Details: PIPATL resumes!


Wednesday, September 4, 2013


Title: Hooray! First regular PIPATL Meeting after the summer break
Details: PIPATL resumes!


Wednesday, July 31, 2013


Title: no meeting unless you hear otherwise
Details: Over the summer "on demand" research meetings will be chaired my Michael Commons, PH.D. These meetings are for members to design studies, do statistical analysis and generally to get papers into publishable form. If you are interested in doing these tasks in the PIPATL Weds. time slot, please contact Michael to schedule at: commons@tiac.net


Wednesday, July 24, 2013


Title: no meeting unless you hear otherwise
Details: Over the summer "on demand" research meetings will be chaired my Michael Commons, PH.D. These meetings are for members to design studies, do statistical analysis and generally to get papers into publishable form. If you are interested in doing these tasks in the PIPATL Weds. time slot, please contact Michael to schedule at: commons@tiac.net


Wednesday, July 17, 2013


Title: no meeting unless you hear otherwise
Details: Over the summer "on demand" research meetings will be chaired my Michael Commons, PH.D. These meetings are for members to design studies, do statistical analysis and generally to get papers into publishable form. If you are interested in doing these tasks in the PIPATL Weds. time slot, please contact Michael to schedule at: commons@tiac.net


Wednesday, July 10, 2013


Title: Last regular meeting of the Summer
Background: We will resume regular weekly meetings the first Wednesday after Labor Day
Details: Over the summer "on demand" research meetings will be chaired my Michael Commons, PH.D. These meetings are for members to design studies, do statistical analysis and generally to get papers into publishable form. If you are interested in doing these tasks in the PIPATL Weds. time slot, please contact Michael to schedule at: commons@tiac.net


Wednesday, April 3, 2013

Presenter: Abi Gopal, M.D. UCSF Program in Psychiatry and the Law
Title: Physician-assisted suicide: Considering evidence and an emerging role for psychiatry
Background: Physician-assisted suicide remains one of the most provocative topics facing society today. Given the great responsibility conferred to physicians by recent laws allowing physician-assisted suicide, a careful examination of this subject is warranted by psychiatrists and other specialists who may be consulted during a patient’s request for physician-assisted suicide.
Details: In this article, the most common arguments for and against physician-assisted suicide are summarized and used to illustrate multiple concerns held by opponents of physician-assisted suicide that remain in question. Next, recent evidence regarding the implementation of physician-assisted suicide in the United States and Netherlands is reviewed and an argument is made that empirical studies may illuminate our analysis of different aspects of this topic and be used to frame the overall debate. The implications of these data and the arguments put forth thus far are discussed, and the article finishes by exploring a potentially expanding role for psychiatrists in evaluating patients who request physician-assisted suicide.


Wednesday, February 6, 2013

Presenter: Frank M. Dattilio. Ph.D., ABPP, Harvard Medical School
Title: Juvenile Delinquency and Decertification
Background: Adjusting penalties for crimes committed by youths has been known for hundreds of years, as exemplified by the 10th century statute of Anglo-Saxon king Aethelstan, which provided that no person younger than 15 years should be slain for robbery "except he should make resistance or flee."
Details: This presentation offers a practice-riented overview of juvenile decertification examinations-known in some jurisdictions as "waiver examinations-with particular attention to preparation, data collection, data interpretation, and communication of results.


Wednesday, January 9, 2013

Presenter: PIPATL meetings resume on January 9th
Title: Welcome Back - first meeting of the new year.
Background: more information to follow
Details: Dr. Gordon Harper plans to present ...


Wednesday, January 2, 2013

Presenter: we will resume weekly meetings on January 9th, 2013
Title: no meeting unless you hear otherwise
Background: notify Dr. Bursztajn and Archie Brodsky to suggest an agenda for a meeting
Details: Happy New Year! Here is to a prolific New Year with lots more publications and contributions to the professional literature. Remember, "No one has done the study!"


Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Presenter: we will resume weekly meetings on January 9th, 2013
Title: no meeting unless you hear otherwise
Background: notify Dr. Bursztajn and Archie Brodsky to suggest an agenda for a meeting


Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Presenter: Richard Sobel
Title: Justifiable Reliance on Privacy in a Digital Age: Standards for Privacy Protections after the Jones GPS case.
Background: This talk expands on issues in Richard Sobel`s last PIPATL presentation on social and psychological effects of widespread electronic invasions of privacy in whole body scans (and “enhanced” pat downs). It asks how to protect against intrusions and protect privacy constitutionally.
Details: Drawing on a forthcoming article, "The Fourth Amendment Beyond Katz, Kyllo and Jones: Reinstating Justifiable Reliance as a More Secure Constitutional Standard for Privacy" (Boston University, Public Interest Law Journal) this presentation discusses the justifiable reliance standard as encompassing and extending on the more traditional trespass and reasonable expectations of privacy.


Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Presenter: Charu Tuladhar and Michael Lamport Commons
Title: PIPATL will meet; presentation of a draft paper
Background: check back for more details


Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Presenter: we will resume weekly meetings on January 9th, 2013
Title: no meeting unless you hear otherwise
Background: notify Dr. Bursztajn and Archie Brodsky to suggest an agenda for a meeting


Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Presenter: The Usual Participants
Title: Regular Meeting


Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Presenter: Eric Y. Drogin, JD, PhD
Title: This topic is postponed due to Hurricane Sandy and cancelled flights
Background: The Supreme Court of Pennsylvania recently handed down its opinion in Thierfelder v. Wofert (2012). In this case of first impression, the Court declined to extend the "specialist duty"- a prohibition forbidding mental health professionals from engaging in sex with their patients- to general practitioners, even in cases in which the professional services of those general practitioners include "incidental mental health treatment." Consequently, the Court held that general practitioners, functioning as such, are not "subject to medical malpractice liability in tort" for sexual boundary violations.
Details: Participants will explore the clinical, ethical, and legal implications of this reasoning across disciplines.


Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Presenter: many PIPATL will be in Montreal
Title: No Meeting
Background: The annual meeting of the American Academy of Psychiatry and Law is in Montreal so PIPATL will net be meeting.


Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Presenter: Professor John R. Williams LL.B. Wales, LL.B. Cantab., Barrister-at-Law, Aberstwyth University
Title: Sexual Relationships in Institutional Settings
Background: Sexual Relationships in institutional settings-such as jails, prisons, hospitals, nursing homes, and halfway houses-are frequently the focus of security-driven rules and regulations that reflect a pervasive lack of humanistic insight and a troubling disregard for basic human rights.
Details: This presentation will address the legal, ethical, and professional practice perspectives on an issue of central importance for millions of older persons, incarcerated persons, and persons with mental or physical disabilities. Attendees will explore a variety of international approaches to this topic and discuss recommendations for professional education and statutory reform.


Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Presenter: Dr. Oren Asman, LLD. from the International Center for Health, Law and Ethics, Haifa University, Israel and the Zefat Bioethics Forum, Zefat Academic College, Israel
Title: Forensic Psychiatry in Israeli Shari`a Courts
Background: Mulsim law refers to various mental categories and their potential relation to competence. Some of these are: Ma`tuh (mentally impaired), Majnun (insane), Safih (spendthrift), and Saghir (minor).
Details: The presentation will review these terms and categories and its relevance to contemporary clinical terminology and introduce some of the findings and conclusions of research conducted in Israeli Shari`a courts regarding mental competence, as part of the presenter`s Doctorate thesis at the Hebrew University in Jerusalem.


Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Presenter: Oren Asman LLB, LLM, PhD Candidate
Title: Islamic Bioethics
Background: From the International Center for Health, Law and Ethics, Haifa University, Israel and the Zefat Bioethics Forum, Zefat Academic College, Israel
Details: Introduction to the current Islamic reasoning in Bioethics related matters followed by several examples from a multicultural country (namely: Israel).


Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Presenter: The Usual Participants
Title: Regular Meeting


Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Presenter: The Usual Participants
Title: Regular Meeting


Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Presenter: The Usual Participants
Title: Regular Meeting


Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Presenter: Angela Mauss-Hanke, Psychologist and Psychoanalyst, Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität Munich; Harold Bursztajn, MD, Harvard Medial School
Title: Nazi Physicians` Crimes against Humanity: a psychoanalytical approach
Background: Cosponsored by the Program in Psychiatry and the Law @ BIDMC and the American Unit of the UNESCO Bioethics Chair
Details: This meeting will be held in our usual room Deaconess 205 A in the Farr Building. Please rsvp if you want to attend to: harold_bursztajn@hms.harvard.edu


Wednesday, April 4, 2012

Presenter: The Usual Participants
Title: Regular Meeting, Different Location
Details: Meeting will be held in room G2 in the basement of the Deac Building


Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Presenter: The Usual Participants
Title: Welcome Back to PIPATL for a new school year!


Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Presenter: Patti Miller & Michael Commons
Title: Research and Editing Meeting


Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Presenter: Patti Miller & Michael Commons
Title: Research and Editing Meeting


Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Presenter: Patti Miller & Michael Commons
Title: Research and Editing Meeting


Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Presenter: Patti Miller & Michael Commons
Title: Research and Editing Meeting


Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Presenter: Patti Miller & Michael Commons
Title: Research and Editing Meeting


Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Presenter: there is no meeting of PIPATL summer research on 7/27
Title: no meeting


Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Presenter: Patti Miller & Michael Commons
Title: Research and Editing Meeting


Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Presenter: Regular Meeting
Title: The Usual Participants
Background: This is the last official meeting of the summer. Research and Editing meetings begin next week, 7/20. Regular meetings of PIPATL will resume in September.


Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Presenter: Eric Y. Drogin, J.D., Ph.D., ABPP
Title: Expert Witness Immunity: What’s Your Best Shot?
Background: As noted in a recent issue of Pediatrics, a new trend has been seen with the increased number of lawsuits against expert witnesses.
Details: Historically, the principle of witness immunity has shielded experts from legal reprisal based on the nature of their testimony. To bring greater accountability to expert witness testimony in malpractice cases, some legal authorities have sought to have a distinction drawn between expert witnesses and witnesses of fact. These critics postulate that because experts testify voluntarily and receive significant compensation for their services, general witness immunity should not apply to them. Various courts have responded differently to this concept. PIPATL attendees will receive an overview of expert witness immunity issues with jurisdiction-specific recommendations for forensic practice inoculation.


Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Presenter: Dr. Samuel Wolfman Ph.D., J.D.
Title: Mental Health and the Law in Israel
Background: I serve in a judicial position as chairman of a statutory committee which serves as an appeal court on involuntary admissions orders issued by the District Psychiatrist – a statutory unique position in Israel – or on request of psychiatric departments to prolong such involuntary admissions. Besides the chairman who is a legal expert with qualifications of a judge, the committee has also two psychiatrists. I sit in such committees at least once a week and we examine each time 12-18 psychiatric patients. Consequently, my presentations are not theoretical ones but rather can demonstrate real examples.
Details: The legal situation in Israel, the different approaches of the psychiatrists vis-à-vis the judiciary regarding such involuntary hospitalizations, he status of the mentally ill in the civil law (contracts, wills, tort), The problematic issue of the length of involuntary hospitalizations of mental criminals, Criminal liability and /or competence to stand trials of the mentally ill.


Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Presenter: Seema Garg, Ph. D.
Title: Discussion of boundary violations in psychotherapy, with case example.
Background: We will discuss what sorts of factors to consider when faced with therapeutic relationships that could result in boundary violations.


Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Presenter: Lisa St. Angelo, M.D.
Title: Demystifying medicolegal documentation: preliminary empirical results of a resident chart review


Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Presenter: Richard Sobel
Title: Update on medical privacy


Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Presenter: Don Condie, M.D. and Donna Norris M.D.
Title: The Rebecca Riley Verdict and Implications for Child Psychiatry
Background: A discussion with Donna Norris MD and Don Condie MD about the public and professional reaction to the recent guilty verdict in the Rebecca Riely murder case and its implications for psychiatry.


Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Presenter: various posters
Title: no meeting - go to the Mysell Lectures and Poster Session


Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Presenter: Donna Norris, M.D.
Title: presentation of poster


Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Presenter: Irene C. Coletsos MD and Harold J. Bursztajn MD
Title: Teaching Suicide Risk Evaluation and Reduction to Primary Care Providers and Mental Health Clinicians in Training.
Background: OBJECTIVE: Suicide is the 11th most common cause of death in the U.S., at an estimated 32,000 per year (with an estimated 10x that many attempts) and the third leading cause of death among teenagers. [1,2] An estimated 45% present to a primary care provider in the month before a completed suicide versus an estimated 20% who present to a mental health provider. [3] Teaching clinicians, who are not mental experts, the signs, symptoms and risks of suicide could increase the number of treatment opportunities for these concerning patients.
Details: RESULTS: Several factors are thought to increase the risk of suicide attempts. We outline these factors, and offer some concrete tools for interventions and harm reduction in a forum used by primary care providers and mental health clinicians in training. CONCLUSIONS: Primary care providers and mental health clinicians-in-training represent the front lines of detection of a large number of patients who are at risk for suicide. We believe that providing context and tools to better understand and treat such patients will increase the possibility of constructive and we hope life-saving interventions.


Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Presenter: The Usua Participants
Title: Regular Meeting


Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Presenter: The Usual Participants
Title: Regular Meeting
Background: First meeting of the New Year.


Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Presenter: Happy New Year!
Title: No Meeting
Background: We will not be meeting on 12/30. The next meeting is January 6th, 2010.


Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Presenter: Merry Christmas
Title: No Meeting
Background: We will not be meeting on 12/23 or 12/30. The next meeting is January 6th, 2010.


Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Presenter: The Usual Participants
Title: Regular Meeting


Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Presenter: The Usual Participants
Title: Regular Meeting


Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Presenter: Professor John R. Williams, LL.B. Wales, LL.B. Cantab., Barrister-at-Law
Title: “Certainty” and Expert Mental Health Opinions in Legal Proceedings: The British Perspective
Background: Expert mental health witnesses in the British courts must proffer a “statement of truth” that contains specific mandatory components. Pursuant to the Civil Procedure Rules (CPR) of England and Wales, expert mental health witnesses must convey the following: “I confirm that, insofar as the facts stated in my report are within my own knowledge, I have made clear which they are and I believe them to be true, and that the opinions I have expressed represent my true and complete professional opinion.” Similarly, pursuant to the Criminal Procedure Rules (CrPR) of England and Wales, expert mental health witnesses must convey the following: “I confirm that the contents of this report are true to the best of my knowledge and belief and that I make this report knowing that, if it is tendered in evidence, I would be liable to prosecution if I have willfully stated anything which I know to be false or that I do not believe to be true.”
Details: This presentation will explore the impact of “statement of truth” requirements upon British courtroom practice, contrast this scheme with corresponding American procedures, and review additional civil and criminal rules that address expert mental health witness statements and report contents.


Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Presenter: The Usual Participants
Title: Regular Meeting


Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Presenter: Eric Y. Drogin, JD, PhD; Commons, PhD; Thomas Gutheil, MD; Donald Meyer, MD; Donna Norris, MD
Title: “Certainty” and Expert Mental Health Opinions in Legal Proceedings: The American Perspective
Background: This presentation reviews the results of a study conducted in order to gain a fuller understanding of the legal and scientific ramifications of expert mental health witness’ expressed or implied “certainty” in criminal and civil proceedings, with international examples. The few publications previously addressing this issue—e.g., those by Diamond (1985), Miller (2006), Poythress (2004), and Rappeport (1985)—consist of legal or social scientific analyses as opposed to data-driven investigations. In the current study, mental health professionals and attorneys were provided with 43 different statements, including oft-used legal terms (e.g., “beyond a reasonable doubt,” “preponderance of the evidence,” “clear and convincing”) as well as more colloquial and/or circumstantial statements often uttered in a court of law or otherwise in relation to legal proceedings (e.g., “positively,” “in my clinical judgment,” “in my medical opinion,” “diagnostically sound”). Ratings were provided on one form as if the responded uttered the statement, and on another form as if others uttered the statement. An empirically based investigation of the actual meaning of such statements to mental health professionals and lawyers will enable more accurate conveyance and discernment of expert mental health evidence across the spectrum of civil and criminal matters.
Details: PIPATL members will offer commentary on these results in order to assist in the process of moving this study toward publication.


Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Presenter: Lisa Cosgrove PhD & Harold J. Bursztajn MD
Title: What a Reasonable Patient Suffering from a Psychiatric Illness Wants to Be Informed about as to Potential Financial Conflicts of Interest of Their Prescribing Clinician.
Background: Informed consent, defined by the Nuremberg Code1 and updated in 2000 by the World Medical Association Declaration of Helsinki2 requires a minimum of four critical elements: voluntary consent, comprehension of the subject matter, ability to assess risks and benefits, and disclosure of important information.3 What is considered important information for the patient to know is based on a standard of what a reasonable patient would want to know. Examples of the material to be disclosed to patients now include potential financial conflicts of interest (FCOI) of researchers and clinicians. Unfortunately, the prevalence of academic industry collaborations, the dramatic increase in industry funded research, and the financial ties between prescribing providers, organized medicine and the pharmaceutical industry, have complicated, and in some ways compromised, the informed consent process.
Details: Indeed, the field of psychiatry has been described as suffering from a “crisis of credibility” 4 in part, because of the lack of transparency regarding FCOI in APA’s diagnostic and clinical guidelines, and the implications this has for autonomous decision-making. Previously data has been reported as to the financial associations between DSM V panel members and industry5, and on expert members of APA’s practice guidelines for Major Depression, Bipolar Disorder and Schizophrenia6. The current presentation will focus on research designed to enhance the informed consent process for vulnerable patients suffering from psychiatric disorders whose capacity to make informed choices has been diminished both by a their own suffering and the current prescribing climate Vignettes will be used to stimulate a discussion about what constitutes a “reasonable patient” standard in today’s climate.


Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Presenter: The Usual Participants
Title: Regular Meeting


Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Presenter: The Usual Participants
Title: Regular Meeting BUT IN A DIFFERENT BUILDING
Background: TODAY ONLY! Room scheduling conflict We meet in the building just across Pilgrim Rd from the Farr main entrance; the room is: (W)LMOB7


Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Presenter: The Usual Participants
Title: First meeting of Fall Season


Wednesday, July 8, 2009

Presenter: The Usual Participants
Title: Regular Meeting
Background: Our weekly meetings resume following a week off due to the IALMH meeting in NY.


Wednesday, July 1, 2009

Presenter: No Meeting
Title: Meeting Cancelled
Background: A number of PIPATL members are going to be away at the International Academy meeting in New York.


Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Presenter: The Usual Participants
Title: Regular Meeting


Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Presenter: Elizabeth L. Leonard, PhD
Title: Assessment of executive function in neuropsychological testing and implications for forensic evaluations Part 2
Background: Two high profile forensic cases where neuropsychological testing was used to document subtle cognitive dysfunction will be discussed.


Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Presenter: Elizabeth L. Leonard, PhD
Title: Assessment of executive function in neuropsychological testing and implications for forensic evaluations Part 1
Background: The presentation will focus on how neuropsychological testing can supplement information about cognitive function when a mental status examination is insufficient.


Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Presenter: Seema Garg, Ph.D. and Eric Y. Drogin, J.D., Ph.D.
Title: Ensuring Accuracy of Testamentary Capacity Evaluations
Background: We will discuss how to assess whether someone is competent to make a will. Factors which can complicate the picture, including mental illness, undue influence, sudden drastic changes in the will, etc. will be discussed. We will discuss some methods to assess competency, in such a way as to reduce the chances of a will being contested after the testator`s death.


Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Presenter: The Usual Participants
Title: Regular Meeting


Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Presenter: The Usual Participants
Title: Regular Meeting


Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Presenter: The Usual Participants
Title: Regular Meeting


Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Presenter: The Usual Participants
Title: Regular Meeting


Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Presenter: Dr. Gordon Haper
Title: Psychoactive Medications in Children: Are We Seeing a Paradigm Shift?
Background: Dr. Harper is a child psychiatrist, Associate Professor at HMS, Medical Director for Child/Adolescent Services at the Massachusetts Dept. of Mental Health.


Wednesday, February 4, 2009


Title: No Meeting


Wednesday, January 28, 2009


Title: Snow Storm


Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Presenter: The Usual Participants
Title: Regular Meeting


Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Presenter: The Usual Participants
Title: Regular Meeting


Wednesday, January 7, 2009

Presenter: The Usual Participants
Title: Regular Meeting
Details: First Meeting of the New Year!


Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Presenter: Happy New Year!
Title: No Meeting


Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Presenter: Merry Christmas
Title: No Meeting


Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Presenter: Hamel/Davis
Title: Transference and Countertransference in the Lawyer-Client Relationship"
Background: Hamel/Davis presentation on "Transference and Countertransference in the Lawyer-Client Relationship"


Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Presenter: The Usual Participants
Title: General Meeting


Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Presenter: The Usual Participants
Title: General Meeting


Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Presenter: Professor John R. Williams
Title: New “Deprivation of Liberty” Standards for Older Persons: The UK Perspective
Background: Professor John R. Williams (Presenter). LL.B. Wales, LL.B. Cantab., Barrister-at-Law. Department of Law and Criminology, Aberystwyth University
Details: Article 5 of the European Convention on Human Rights (ECHR) articulates a “right to liberty and security” that allows for only a handful of codified exceptions, including “the lawful detention of persons … of unsound mind.” In the wake of the Bournewood (1999) case and related proposals, as well as the new Mental Capacity Act (2005), the United Kingdom’s scheme for determining appropriate “deprivation of liberty” for older persons with alleged infirmities is undergoing substantial revision. PIPATL attendees will receive an overview of these issues with reference to international implications for human rights and professional practice.


Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Presenter: The Usual Participants
Title: General Meeting


Wednesday, October 8, 2008

Presenter: The Usual Participants
Title: General Meeting


Wednesday, October 1, 2008

Presenter: PIPATL researchers
Title: Review of IRB submission for 9 studies


Wednesday, September 3, 2008

Presenter: Robert L. Sadoff, M.D. & Frank M. Dattilio, Ph.D., ABPP
Title: PIPATL meetings resume!
Background: We will be meeting in our new room, second floor, Deaconess building, 185 Pilgrim road. At this writing it is no clear whether we will be in 201C or 205; look around when you get there for signs.
Details: FRANK M. DATTILIO, Ph.D., ABPP , is one of the leading figures in the world in cognitive-behavior therapy. He maintains a dual faculty appointment in the Department of Psychiatry at Harvard Medical School and the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine. He is a licensed psychologist in the states of PA, NJ, NY and DE and is listed in the National Register of Health Service Providers in Psychology. Dr. Dattilio is board certified in both clinical psychology and behavioral psychology through the American Board of Professional Psychology (ABPP) and received a Certificate of Training in Forensic Psychology through the Department of Psychiatry at the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. He is also a founding fellow of the Academy of Cognitive Therapy (ACT). Dr. Dattilio has been a visiting faculty member at many major universities and medical schools throughout the world. *Robert L. Sadoff, M.D.* * *Dr. Robert Sadoff is a clinical professor of psychiatry, director at the Center for Studies in Social-Legal Psychiatry, and director of the Forensic Psychiatry Clinic at the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine. He is board certified in psychiatry, forensic psychiatry, and legal medicine, and has added qualifications in forensic psychiatry with the American Board of Psychiatry and Neurology. In 40 years, Dr. Sadoff has examined more than 10,000 individuals charged with crimes. He has testified in numerous criminal and civil trials, both in state and federal courts. Author of six books and 90 professional articles, he has lectured in nearly every state and many foreign countries.


Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Presenter: The Usual Participants
Title: Last meeting before summer break
Background: The research component will continue to meet on Wednesdays through the summer. Check back for more information and details.


Wednesday, July 9, 2008

Presenter: The Usual Participants
Title: Regular Meeting


Wednesday, July 2, 2008

Presenter: The Usual Participants
Title: Regular Meeting


Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Presenter: The Usual Participants
Title: Regular Meeting


Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Presenter: The Usual Participants
Title: Regular Meeting


Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Presenter: The Usual Participants
Title: Regular Meeting


Wednesday, June 4, 2008

Presenter: William B. Barr Ph.D.
Title: Neuropsychological Assessment of Malingering
Background: William B. Barr Ph.D., ABPP, Associate Professor of Neurology and Psychiatry New York University School of Medicine, NYU Comprehensive Epilepsy Center. Assessing effort and validity of a patient’s responses during testing has been hot topic for neuropsychologists since the 1980’s.
Details: This talk will review the evolution of techniques for assessment of symptom validity through neuropsychological testing and present some of the newest available methods. The presentation will be divided between reviews of techniques for determining the validity of neuropsychological testing and those used for assessing the veracity of various psychiatric presentations through the use of interview methods and self-report inventories. Studies on the estimated base rates of symptom exaggeration in clinical and both civil and criminal forensic settings will be presented with a conclusion that the rate of malingered neurocognitive and psychiatric illnesses is likely higher than what is believed by most practicing clinicians.


Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Presenter: The Usual Participants
Title: Regular Meeting


Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Presenter: The Usual Participants
Title: Regular Meeting


Wednesday, May 14, 2008

Presenter: The Usual Participants
Title: Regular Meeting


Wednesday, May 7, 2008

Presenter: Check back for update
Title: Possibly no meeting due to APA Meeting in Washington


Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Presenter: The Usual Participants
Title: Regular Meeting


Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Presenter: Thomas G. Gutheil, M.D.
Title: Case Presentation and Discussion
Background: Dr. Gutheil will present a complex and confidential case report for discussion.


Wednesday, April 16, 2008

Presenter: Ed Mitchell, Ph.D.
Title: Informal psychiatric diagnosis of acquaintances UNCERTAIN IF THIS IS HAPPENING _ CHECK BACK PLEASE FOR UPDATE
Background: What are the ethical implications of informally implying to acquaintances that they (or people known to them) may have psychiatric problems? Do such situations differ from the implications of making `passer-by` or `dinner party` diagnoses of physical disorder (e.g. mentioning to someone they have a suspicious mole that might be a melanoma?). If so, how?
Details: Ed spent a year with PIPATL in 1999 whilst doing his PhD in criminology at University of Cambridge UK, but has since completed a medical degree. I recently published a paper (Mitchell, E. W. (2008) The ethics of passer-by diagnosis. The Lancet, 371, 85-87) which discussed making unsolicited diagnoses of physical disorder outside of a clinical relationship. I wish to apply the ethical issues discussed in this paper to psychiatric diagnosis and would be grateful to get the group`s opinions. During the next year, he will also be researching the establishment of clinical (not research) ethics committees in the UK (which are a comparatively new innovation in UK healthcare), particularly those involved with mental health decisions, and would be very pleased to learn from PIPATL members about their experiences of the US equivalents, which have been around a lot longer.


Wednesday, April 9, 2008

Presenter: The Usual Participants
Title: Regular meeting


Wednesday, April 2, 2008

Presenter: The Usual Participants
Title: Regular meeting


Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Presenter: The Usual Participants
Title: Regular meeting


Wednesday, March 19, 2008

Presenter: The Usual Participants
Title: Regular meeting


Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Presenter: The Usual Participants
Title: Regular meeting


Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Presenter: The Usual Participants
Title: Regular meeting


Wednesday, March 5, 2008

Presenter: The Usual Participants
Title: Regular meeting
Background: Today will be devoted to a book signing featuring Thomas G. Gutheil, M.D. with his latest book, "Practical Approaches to Forensic Mental Health Testimony."


Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Presenter: The Usual Participants
Title: Regular Meeting


Wednesday, February 20, 2008

Presenter: The Usual Participants
Title: Regular Meeting


Wednesday, February 13, 2008

Presenter: The Usual Participants
Title: Regular Meeting


Wednesday, February 6, 2008

Presenter: Russell K. Schutt, Ph.D.
Title: Do the Housing Preferences of Homeless Persons with Severe Mental Illness Differ from Clinicians` Housing Recommendations and Does that Difference Matter?
Background: Department of Psychiatry, BIDMC (MMHC) and Department of Sociology, University of Massachusetts Boston.
Details: Most homeless persons diagnosed with severe and persistent mental illness want to live in independent apartments, yet clinicians recommend staffed group housing for most of them. Surveys in several settings will be used to describe this discrepancy and to identify its sources. The extent to which this discrepancy matters for housing retention and personal functioning will be examined with data collected in the Boston McKinney Project, a randomized trial of group and independent living. Implications will be discussed for housing policies and other mental health services.


Wednesday, January 30, 2008

Presenter: The Usual Participants
Title: Regular Meeting


Wednesday, January 23, 2008

Presenter: The Usual Participants
Title: Regular Meeting
Background: Dr. Gutheil will lead a discussion of various issues surrounding how specialized various mental health personnel might interrelate, especially when there are overlapping, including serving as an expert witness.


Wednesday, January 16, 2008

Presenter: The Usual Participants
Title: Regular Meeting


Wednesday, January 9, 2008

Presenter: Michael A. Grodin, M.D.
Title: Military Medical Ethics and Guantanamo: The Role of Psychiatry in Suicides, Hunger Strikes and Interrogations.
Background: Professor of Health Law, Bioethics and Human Rights, Boston University School of Public Health
Details: Dr. Grodin is a consultant to the legal team representing detainees at Guantanamo. He is the only physician to have actually reviewed medical records, debated the Army Surgeon General and met with military Doctors at Walter Reed Medical Center.


Wednesday, January 2, 2008

Presenter: The Usual Participants
Title: Regular Meeting


Wednesday, December 26, 2007

Presenter: Have a Happy Holiday and a Happy New Year!
Title: No meeting due to Christmas Holiday


Wednesday, December 19, 2007

Presenter: Patrice Marie Miller, Ed.D.
Title: Folk Psychology and the Law


Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Presenter: The Usual Participants
Title: Regular Meeting


Wednesday, December 5, 2007

Presenter: The Usual Participants
Title: Regular Meeting


Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Presenter: The Usual Participants
Title: Regular Meeting


Wednesday, November 21, 2007


Title: No Meeting Due to Thanksgiving Holiday


Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Presenter: Frank M. Dattilio, Ph.D., ABPP
Title: Equitable Tolling: Assessing Competency to File a Writ of Habeas Corpus in Evidentiary Hearings
Background: The general concept of equitable tolling will be discussed. A case will also be presented, in which an assessment was conducted on a gentleman who was incarcerated with a long history of mental illness. The issue pertains to his competency to file a petition for a writ of habeas corpus in support of an evidentiary hearing.
Details: In this case, the defendant had filed the instant petition for a writ of habeas corpus 10 years after his state conviction became final. The petitioner sought equitable tolling of the Antiterrorism and Effective Death Penalty Act (AEDPA) limitations, alleging that the defendant`s severe mental illness and cognitive limitations caused his inability to file a timely petition. The presentation will discuss how a psychological evaluation was used in order to support the defendant`s motion to expand the record in the matter through testimony during his hearing.


Wednesday, November 7, 2007

Presenter: The Usual Participants
Title: Regular Meeting


Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Presenter: Scientology
Title: Scientology movie: "Psychiatry, Industry of Death"
Background: The Scientologists sent us a copy of their movie and we will view it.


Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Presenter: James B. Gottstein, J.D.
Title: PsychRights` Strategic Litigation Campaign Against Forced Psychiatric Drugging and Electroshock: Using law and science to create less intrusive alternatives.
Background: The Law Project for Psychiatric Rights` (PsychRights) mission is to mount a strategic litigation campaign against forced psychiatric drugging and electroshock around the country using the scientific research to underpin the effort.
Details: The speaker, PsychRights` CEO Jim Gottstein, is the attorney who subpoenaed the Zyprexa Papers and released them to the New York Times. This resulted in extensive coverage of Lilly`s suppression of data demonstrating harm caused by Zyprexa, its illegal off-label marketing, and a call for a Congressional investigation. Mr. Gottstein will discuss the importance of such data to PsychRights` successes and its implications on the necessity for the public mental health system to implement people`s constitutional right to less intrusive alternatives.


Wednesday, October 17, 2007


Title: No Meeting due to the AAPL Meeting in Miami, FL


Wednesday, October 10, 2007

Presenter: Richard Sobel, Ed.D.
Title: A Confidentiality Dilemma
Background: The editor of a book on Medical Professionalism has asked Richard Sobel to write a response to a vignette for a chapter on medical confidentiality in psychiatry. The focus of this meeting will be a discussion of this with PIPATL colleagues on their perspectives.
Details: Here is the vignette: "A 35 year-old man is seeing his psychiatrist for depression. At the end of a visit, he asks the psychiatrist to code the diagnosis as insomnia and not depression because of his concern about the confidentiality of records and discrimination based on diagnosis of depression." Richard Sobel welcomes your comments in seminar and/or by email. If you know of any references on the topic or have had similar situations, they would be particularly helpful.


Wednesday, October 3, 2007

Presenter: Professor John R. Williams, LL.B.
Title: Britain’s New Mental Health Act
Background: As currently styled, Britain’s new Mental Health Act will enable compulsory treatment of persons with “severe personality disorders,” without leave to oppose on the basis of a lack of “treatability.”
Details: Many psychiatrists oppose this measure, arguing it will turn them into “jailers.” The Act would also allow restrictions—such as curfews—to be imposed on patients in the community. Mental health charities and the Royal College of Psychiatrists have expressed their concern that these measures will dissuade persons with mental health problems from seeking help. PIPATL attendees will receive an overview of the Act with reference to implications for human rights and professional practice.


Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Presenter: The Usual Participants
Title: Regular Meeting


Wednesday, September 19, 2007

Presenter: The Usual Participants
Title: Regular Meeting


Wednesday, September 12, 2007

Presenter: The Usual Participants
Title: Regular Meeting


Wednesday, September 5, 2007

Presenter: The Usual Participants
Title: First meeting of the New Academic Year
Background: The summer is over, the research meetings were productive, and now we begin a New Academic Year.


Wednesday, August 29, 2007

Presenter: Graham L. Spruiell, M.D. and Mark J. Hauser, M.D.
Title: Attitudes of Professionals Towards their own Medical Privacy


Wednesday, August 22, 2007

Presenter: Allan S. Nineberg, MD
Title: design research on clergy sexual abuse


Wednesday, August 15, 2007

Presenter: Eric Drogin and Michael Commons
Title: Medical and Professional Certainty - review and possible data collection


Wednesday, August 8, 2007

Presenter: Barry Roth, M.D.
Title: Research Meeting
Background: Discussion of Dr. Roth`s paper on the limits of separating dual roles of clinician`s as fact witnesses vs. expert witnesses.


Wednesday, August 1, 2007

Presenter: William (Baz) Harrigan and Nicholas Commons-Miller
Title: Stage of religious and atheistic causality using very different instruments.


Wednesday, July 18, 2007

Presenter: Michael Lamport Commons, Ph.D.
Title: Summer Seminar and Workshop on Doing Research for Free and Publishing
Background: During the summer, from July 18th to August 30th the Program in Psychiatry and the Law, Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, Harvard Medical School, will sponsor a weekly seminar and workshop in which people learn to develop their ideas, to do research for free, and to publish their reports in appropriate journals.
Details: These meetings are open to all people in the Psychiatry Department. During these meetings, attendees are helped to plan articles and new studies and to work intensively to edit instruments for acquiring data and very rough draft manuscripts. Attendees are also taught how to revise rejected articles. Wednesday, 11am-1pm. Please email to plan when you would like your work on the agenda.


Wednesday, July 11, 2007

Presenter: The Usual Participants
Title: Regular Meeting - Last regular meeting of the season


Wednesday, July 4, 2007

Presenter: Happy Independence Day!
Title: No meeting due to July 4th


Wednesday, June 27, 2007

Presenter: The Usual Participants
Title: Regular Meeting


Wednesday, June 20, 2007

Presenter: Edward G. Bernstine, Ph.D.
Title: Ethical Matters in Crime Laboratory Work
Background: Ed Bernstine, Professor of Biology and Forensic Science at Bay Path College
Details: Ed will describe several incidents that arose during his tenure at the Mass. State Police Crime Laboratory that raised ethical questions. In addition, Ed will briefly discuss the case of alleged sexual assault at Duke and the recent testimony of Henry Lee in the murder trial of Phil Spector.


Wednesday, June 13, 2007

Presenter: Thomas G. Gutheil
Title: Boundary Issues - Video Education Part 2
Background: We will view, and discuss, the Educational Video starring Tom Gutheil made for the State of New York.


Wednesday, June 6, 2007

Presenter: The Usual Participants
Title: Regular Meeting


Wednesday, May 30, 2007

Presenter: Angela Hegarty
Title: Coercive Interrogation: Lessons from US v Padilla
Background: Dr. Angela Hegarty, a forensic neuropsychiatrist, said she concluded after examining and testing Padilla for more than 22 hours last fall that he is mentally incompetent for trial because he has post-traumatic stress disorder.
Details: Zapf reached the same diagnosis and recommended that Padilla receive treatment. Padilla`s symptoms are most acute when he is asked to talk about his 3 1/2 years in the brig, including interrogations techniques used on him, or to review evidence in his criminal case, including transcripts of intercepted telephone conversations, Hegarty said. "He doesn`t want to because it hurts so much, and because it hurts so much he shuts down," Hegarty said. When Padilla was asked about his case or the brig, Zapf said, he becomes noticeably tense, begins to sweat, tries to change the subject and rocks back and forth while hunched over. She said he was adamant that he did not want to testify in his own defense. "He said he can`t relive it, he can`t go through it again, and he can`t name names," Zapf said.


Wednesday, May 23, 2007


Title: No meeting due to the APA meeting in San Diego


Wednesday, May 16, 2007

Presenter: Elvin Semrad, M.D.
Title: View video of Elvin Semrad conducting an interview.
Background: We will view the only extant video of Elvin Semrad, MD in action, interviewing a nurse with BPD


Wednesday, May 9, 2007

Presenter: No Meeting
Title: No Meeting
Background: Suggestion: attend the annual Hasenbush Day at the 1200 Beacon St. Holiday Inn. The speaker will be Axel Hoffer, M.D.


Wednesday, May 2, 2007

Presenter: The Usual Participants
Title: Regular Meeting


Wednesday, April 25, 2007

Presenter: Michael A. Grodin, M.D.
Title: Mad, Bad or Evil, How Healers Become Killers: From Nazi Germany to Abu Ghraib
Background: Michael A. Grodin, M.D., Professor of Health Law, Bioethics, and Human Rights, Department of Health Law, Bioethics and Human Rights Boston University School of Public Health, Professor of Socio-Medical Sciences, Community Medicine, and Psychiatry, Boston University School of Medicine
Details: Dr. Grodin`s primary areas of interest include: the relationship of health and human rights, bioethics and the philosophy of psychiatry and psychoanalysis.


Wednesday, April 18, 2007

Presenter: The Usual Participants
Title: Regular Meeting


Wednesday, April 11, 2007

Presenter: Barry H. Roth, M.D. and Eric Y. Drogin, J.D., Ph.D.
Title: Substituted Judgment
Background: Presenters will provide a thematically integrated overview of clinical, forensic, legal, and ethical issues concerning substitutions for prior, present, and future judgment, in the context of advance directives, informed consent, and guardianship, respectively.
Details: Attendees may wish to review Gutheil, T. G., & Appelbaum, P. S. (1985). The substituted judgment approach: Its difficulties and paradoxes in mental health settings. The Law, Medicine and Health Care, 13(2), 61-64.


Wednesday, April 4, 2007

Presenter: The Usual Participants
Title: Regular Meeting


Wednesday, March 28, 2007

Presenter: The Usual Participants
Title: Regular Meeting


Wednesday, March 21, 2007


Title: Regular Meeting


Wednesday, March 14, 2007

Presenter: Rina Z. Folman, Ph.D.
Title: The "Out of Control" Divorce: Coaching, Consulting and Emerging Strategies for Court Involved Clients
Background: Medical Staff, Psychology Department, University of Massachusetts Memorial Health Alliance (Fitchburg and Leominster); Private Practice offices in Brookline, Fitchburg and Leominster, MA
Details: Lawyers and Judges increasingly turn to mental health professionals for guidance and expertise in difficult divorce and custody cases. This speaker will introduce a new perspective and paradigm for assisting the courts and the mental health client/litigant, while maintaining boundaries and proper professional standards. A goal contained in this paradigm is teaching clinicians how to promote wellness and resiliency in clients involved in divorce litigation.


Wednesday, March 7, 2007


Title: Regular Meeting


Wednesday, February 28, 2007

Presenter: Thomas G. Gutheil, Donna Norris and Michael Commons
Title: Trading Professional (Forensic) duties and personal duties.


Wednesday, February 21, 2007

Presenter: Richard Sobel, Ed.D. & Harold Bursztajn, M.D.
Title: Strong state privacy laws avoid HIPAA pitfalls
Background: We will discuss a draft of their paper.


Wednesday, February 7, 2007

Presenter: The Usual Participants
Title: Regular Meeting


Wednesday, January 24, 2007

Presenter: J. Tyler Carpenter, Ph.D. NOTE: meeting location has changed
Title: How Do We Think In Groups About Criminal Justice Issues?
Background: How we deal with issues of moral intransigence, e.g.., “badness”, is fundamental to individual and group functioning, as well as existential meaning making.
Details: A presentation of the concept of Group Think, based on the materials used in a recent presentation to the Federal intelligence community, will be made and used to facilitate a group discussion of the concept of Group Think as it applies to thinking about criminal justice issues such as: Etiology, what constitutes crime, how it should be treated, and what are the obstacles to implementation of successful policy. Almost any factor and attendant rationale (we’ll see what emerges in the group) which contributes to the phenomena of crime and punishment can become part of the rhetoric and political waltz. The rewards are extrinsic to the subject, but the choice of variable and rationalization are important to the group structure and function. The chaos which occurs when systems address complex problems like crime was christened “systemantics” by John Gall in his marvelous 1977 book of that title.


Wednesday, January 17, 2007

Presenter: PIPATL
Title: Regular Meeting


Wednesday, January 10, 2007

Presenter: Thomas G. Gutheil, M.D.
Title: Depositions: tips and traps


Wednesday, January 3, 2007

Presenter: PIPATL
Title: Regular Meeting


Wednesday, December 27, 2006

Presenter: No Meeting
Title: No Meeting
Background: The program will not be meeting.
Details: Happy Holidays! Best Wishes for the New Year!


Wednesday, December 20, 2006

Presenter: Barry H. Roth, M.D.
Title: Two Hats: Towards a More Refined Haberdashery


 
 

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The Program in Psychiatry and The Law meets Wednesday mornings at 11:00 AM in Room 340 3rd floor of the new Mass Mental Health Center at 75 Fenwood Road. Left from the elevator and all the way down the hall.

Check our meetings page regularly to find out about our upcoming meetings.

Our file library includes copies of the Amicus Briefs to which we have contributed: Althaus v. Cohen (PA) and Citizens for Health v. Thompson (Third Circuit).

 Tuesday, September 1, 2015
First meeting of the new academic year = Wednesday, September 9!
 Sunday, February 23, 2014
PIPATL Meeting Location:
Room 340 on the 3rd floor of Mass. Mental Health Center, 75 Fenwood Rd. Left from the elevator and all the way down the hall. The room has a communications center that allows more than one person to call in at a time!!
 
 
 
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