Experts in the field of psychiatry and neuroscience implore the General Assembly to fund programs proven to work, not Victor Pedro

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Actual doctors, experts in the fields of psychiatry and neuroscience, released a letter today challenging the science and efficacy of Victor Pedro‘s Cortical Integrative Therapy, for which Pedro has already received nearly $2M in State funding and is due to receive and additional $1M in the 2020 State Budget.

The letter, sent to lawmakers, is from a group of “leading physicians” in Rhode Island “who are board certified and actually specialize in the related field.” The letter has two dozen signatures and continues to grow.


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Here’s the letter:

“We have grave concerns about the proposal in the Rhode Island 2020 State Budget to give $1 million dollars for Cortical Integrative Therapy services. Based on our research, there is only one clinician providing this service, a Dr Vincent Pedro, who is a chiropractor, not a Rhode Island board certified physician. There has not been even one double-blind placebo-controlled trial regarding cortical integrative therapy though Dr Pedro’s website references a handful of case reports, which are not considered equivalent in determining the safety and efficacy of medical treatments.

“The American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry does not mention cortical integrative therapy in its Practice Parameters for the treatment of ADHD, tic disorders or developmental disorders though Dr Pedro’s website specifically recommends cortical integrative therapy for the treatment of ADHD, Tourette’s and developmental disorders. A brief review of the literature suggests that there is no widespread support for this intervention in the treatment of migraine, concussion or traumatic brain injury, also listed on the website. In 2017, Centers for Medicaid and Medicare denied a request to extend a three-year pilot program with the following rationale:

‘As proposed, the CIT treatment is broadly described, with very few parameters for cost or quality control for the specific array of services billed, the intensity of the services, the length of therapy, or the clinical indications for each service. The state has not provided scientific evidence verifying the efficacy of CIT, nor any indication that CIT was subject to such evaluation. CMS does not grant authority, under a section 1115 demonstration, for clinical interventions that have not demonstrated clinical safety and efficacy through standard clinical evaluation processes, and ideally through a rigorous randomized controlled trial.’

“Since that denial, there has been no additional published scientific evidence based on a review of the literature and Dr Pedro’s own website.

“There are many ways to spend $1 million dollars of state revenue, many of which could demonstrably benefit people living with ADHD, tic disorders, developmental disorders and other brain disorders, including lead exposure prevention, school meals, and the child care assistance program, all of which are facing cuts. There are evidence-based assessments and treatments available for people in our community who live with neurological and psychiatric illnesses. Cortical integrative therapy is not an evidence-based treatment and it would do our state a severe disservice to fund an unproven intervention and reducing funding to programs which do make a clear difference.

“We urge you to revise the 2020 budget so that $1 million dollars is spent wisely and safely to help the health and welfare of Rhode Island residents.”

The letter is signed by:

  • Daisy Bassen, MD, Vice-President, Rhode Island Council of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry
  • David Mandelbaum, MD, Director, Division of Child Neurology, Hasbro Children’s Hospital
  • Molly Tracy, MD, Child Neurologist, Boston Children’s Hospital
  • William Brown, MD, Medical Director, Child Neurology, Hasbro Children’s Hospital
  • James Ingraham, MD, President, Rhode Island Psychiatric Society
  • Elizabeth Lowenhaupt, MD, Secretary, Rhode Island Council of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry
  • Audrey Tyrka, MD, Director of Research, Butler Hospital and Director of the Laboratory for Clinical and Translational Neuroscience
  • Gerrit Vanschalkywk, MD, Unit Chief, Adolescent Unit, Butler Hospital
  • Paul Christopher, MD, adult psychiatry
  • Naureen Attiullah, MD, adult psychiatry
  • Kimberley Chiappone, MD, adult psychiatry
  • Marta Majczak, MD, child psychiatry
  • Kathryn Fleming-Ives, MD, adult psychiatry
  • Michelle Rickerby, MD, child and adolescent psychiatry
  • Benjamin Lederer, MD, child and adolescent psychiatry
  • Christine Rayner, MD, adult psychiatry
  • Craig Kaufmann, MD, adult psychiatry
  • Gerald Tarnoff, MD, child and adolescent psychiatry
  • Pamela Hoffmann, MD, child and adolescent psychiatry
  • Paul Malloy, PhD, licensed psychologist
  • Wendy Plante, PhD, licensed psychologist
  • Melissa Jenkins, PhD, licensed psychologist
  • Anjali Palav, PhD, licensed psychologist
  • Nicole McLaughlin, PhD, licensed psychologist

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About Steve Ahlquist 979 Articles
Steve Ahlquist is a frontline reporter in Rhode Island. He has covered human rights, social justice, progressive politics and environmental news for half a decade.Uprise RI is his new project, and he's doing all he can to make it essential reading.atomicsteve@gmail.com

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