December 22, 2018
Honors and Appointments Secretariat
1 Horse Guards Road
Dear Honors and Appointments Secretariat:
We are writing in support of Barry Haslam’s nomination of Professor Chrystal Heather Ashton for national honour.
Benzodiazepine Information Coalition is a nonprofit based in the United States which educates about the potential adverse effects of benzodiazepines when taken as prescribed. Since our inception in 2016, we have conversed with thousands of patients, many in the United Kingdom, who have been harmed by this class of medication. The majority report not receiving proper guidance from their doctors. The first resource we recommend for these patients is Professor Ashton’s manual as it contains the most comprehensive description of benzodiazepine withdrawal syndrome and a guide for tapering off the drug.
Professor Ashton is an accomplished researcher and clinician and a pioneer in her field. Her life’s work has helped countless numbers of patients dealing with benzodiazepine physical dependence, an often disabling and life-altering condition. Her work stands as a cornerstone that our organization builds upon as we continue to advocate for the harmed. In addition to the above, Heather is generous, having donated her knowledge and time to countless thousands of patients, as well as making her manual available online to all at no cost. Because of her enormous contributions, we would be pleased to see Professor Ashton receive the honour she so richly deserves.
Janice Curle, Christy Huff M.D., and Stephen LaCorte J.D.
Directors, Benzodiazepine Information Coalition