Doctors decry sedating mentally ill

Lives are being put at risk by British Columbia guidelines that require psychiatric patients to be heavily sedated before they are allowed on an air ambulance, according to several rural doctors who say the mentally ill are being stereotyped as dangerous.
Paul Dagg, an associate professor of psychiatry at UBC, said the flaws in the policy, drafted by the B.C. Ambulance Service in 2009 after incidents that put the safety of air crews at risk, have already been identified and are being corrected.
Dr. Dagg said a team that includes medical doctors, ambulance crews and psychiatrists is working on new guidelines, which should be in place, at least on a pilot basis, within 12 months.

Globe and Mail, Fri May 18 2012, Page: A6, By: Mark Hume, Link to full text