The NHS isn’t the only organisation to impose gagging orders: the BPS does so too

The NHS isn’t the only organization to impose gagging orders on its staff. The BPS has effectively done so on at least one of its members since 2006. For what can only be described as self-serving reasons the British Psychological Society has prevented an expert witness from raising public and other professionals’ awareness of converted / latent handedness.
In its simplest formulation, converted / latent handedness is defined as writing with the non-adept hand. And the adept hand in turn is defined as the hand that can perform complex tasks with seemingly effortless ease. But since handedness is a function of brain organization, the core problem is believing one’s right-side is better than the left-side, when forensic probing reveals the reverse to be the case.
There are a number of particularly disturbing features of the BPS’s gagging position:

  • the condition is relatively common and could be so easily diagnosed and treated
  • it is acknowledged, diagnosed and treated in other mainland European countries
  • the emotional and economic costs of failing to diagnose and treat the condition, where present, are borne by individuals themselves, their families, employers, institutions and society at large
  • failure to investigate the condition reveals the BPS’s hypocrisy in claiming to act scientifically with respect to human behaviour when in fact it acts according to ritual.

For the BPS to be able to lift its gagging order it would have to engage in a paradigm shift, from what Kuhn referred to as normal science, to revolutionary science. And for it to achieve this it would have to engage in the same kind of culture shift that has been demanded of the NHS: to paraphrase Lakatos,  use criticism to ‘grow’ practical knowledge.

About petermathews

Member of the Royal Society of Medicine
This entry was posted in British Psychological Society, Common Ground, Innovation, scientific and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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