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VIP Syndrome May Allow Addiction To Kill Celebrities

VIP SyndromeIs the disease of addiction costing the lives of celebrities or is it preferential treatment that is really killing them? The shocking deaths of celebrities like Prince, Chyna, Michael Jackson, Whitney Houston, and Philip Seymour Hoffman should make us question whether or not their doctors are enabling – and in some cases accelerating – their untimely deaths.

It’s a named condition called “VIP syndrome” and it can be prevented.

VIP Syndrome

VIP syndrome was first introduced in 1964 by Dr. Walter Weintraub, a well-known and respected psychiatrist. VIP syndrome is a way of explaining how doctors give celebrities special treatment (rushed testing, prescription medications, etc.) while neglecting some basic medical protocols to avoid inconveniencing their star clientele. It’s as if these celebrities are better than human since most of them are used to be treated a certain kind of way. As a result, if one doctor treats them anything less than what they think they deserve, they may actively seek treatment elsewhere until they get treated the way they think they should rather than the way the need to be treated.

Could more of these celebrity overdose deaths have been prevented if they were only given (and accepting of) the same kind of treatment that other addicts and alcoholics have had the opportunity to receive? Part of the recovery process from addiction is the leveling of pride and ego, and the willingness to humble oneself to living a new way of life. This can be difficult for the average person trying to recover from addiction, and might be even more difficult for the celebrity who has been treated like a God in many ways.

Let’s look at one recent case – the death of Prince.

Although it has not been determined if he was addicted to drugs, he still died after an addiction specialist was contacted on his behalf. His autopsy also revealed deadly levels of opiates in his system. As a result, questions like, what exactly he was taking, how long has he been taking them, and who prescribed them, have come into play.

Now, what is interesting and actually points more towards VIP syndrome is that Prince’s representative had contacted Dr. Howard Kornfeld, an addiction specialist who resides in CA. Dr. Kornfeld actually sent his son, Andrew, who is not even a physician or a trained specialist. Andrew had brought with him buprenorphine – a drug that his father prescribes for the treatment of opiate addiction – to provide to a Minnesota doctor to administer to Prince. Not only is Dr. Kornfeld’s son not a doctor, but he himself had never fully examined Prince nor was he even licensed in the state of Minnesota. In addition, Dr. Schulenberg, the doctor that was going to administer the drug to Prince from Andrew is not even registered in Minnesota to prescribe buprenorphine. All this evidence points to extremely preferential treatment of Prince – and that’s just what has been revealed so far. How much of his treatment did not follow regular medical procedures before his death? Would he, along with others, still be alive if they were treated for their conditions rather than their status?

What Can Be Done About VIP Syndrome?

Doctors need to start treating celebrities like real people so that more lives can be saved.

All parties involved need to be accountable when it comes to the treatment of human life. This includes the doctors as well as the patients. Addiction, although cannot be cured, can be treated and those who struggle with it can recover long-term if they as well as the medical staff is willing to put forth the proper treatment and effort. No matter what status a celebrity has, their life should be treated equally and fairly, too.

No person should have to die at the hands of addiction when there is treatment available. Contact The Watershed today for more information.




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