Dr David Tuller: An Upcoming “Biopsychosocial” Long Covid Conference in Finland


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Trial By Error: An Upcoming “Biopsychosocial” Long Covid Conference in Finland
23 February 2023 by David Tuller Leave a Comment

By David Tuller, DrPH
What is it with the healthcare establishments in northern Europe? Why are they so devoted to non-evidence-based approaches to treating serious medical conditions? Why do they trust arguably fraudulent research, like the PACE trial and Professor Esther Crawley’s pediatric Lightning Process study? Why are the authors of these studies respected and even esteemed among some high-level circles in these countries?

The mind boggles.

The latest on this front is an upcoming gathering in Finland that provides a platform to leading lights of the CBT/GET/’amygdala retraining” ideological brigades. Sponsored by Helsinki University Central Hospital (HUS) and scheduled for March 16th, it is called “Navigating the Unknown: Exploring Realities and Best Practices for Long Covid.”

Here are some of the questions the conference promises to explore: “What is the difference between long Covid and Post Intensive Care Syndrome? What are the relations of Long Covid and chronic fatigue syndrome (ME/CFS)? Are there some risk factors for developing symptoms of Long Covid?” Well, that all sounds reasonable enough.

Then there’s this: “This symposium will focus on the bio-psycho-social aspects of this disorder.” Uh, oh! More biopsychosocial propaganda.
Millions Missing Finland, an ME/CFS advocacy organization, has tweeted concerns about the gathering. In a thread that highlighted the problematic views of most of those presenting, the organization noted that “we find the speaker list peculiar and worrying.”
Could be a meeting of quacks, or could be they are on to something that they don't know what it is yet.

Before the germ theory and then antiseptics, it was all wild speculation on how to prevent infection in surgery. --I'm sure the hand washers were ridiculed by the red-hot cautery folks, etc.

If you feel public funds are being squandered, you could always organize a protest.


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Could be a meeting of quacks, or could be they are on to something that they don't know what it is yet.

There is a whole history to biopsychosocial / psychosomatic model of disease, dating back the the 1980s in the case of ME/CFS. BPS has been an area of huge controversy and intense activism in the ME/CFS community.

The basic rationale for BPS is that if you can categorise a patient's symptoms as "all in the mind", then they do not have a real disease, and so governments as well as insurance companies do not have to provide the patients with disability support.

That saves governments and insurance companies $billions, as ME/CFS is a very expensive disease, because patients do not die, but are too disabled to work, so need a lifetime of disability payments.

Many of the so-called researchers connected to BPS also do paid consultancy work for the disability insurance companies.
Oh. So they are quacks and shills for insurance companies. Disgraceful. Like my managed care MD's. They both seem fixated by short term costs and never see the long term picture.