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Service Men (Drug Experiments)

Volume 984: debated on Thursday 15 May 1980

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asked the Secretary of State for Defence what benefits have been derived from tests carried out with LSD and anticholinergic drugs on Service men.

The tests have helped in the examination of the threat from potential chemical warfare agents, and have significantly added to medical knowledge of the treatment of poisoning by all classes of anticholinesterase drugs. This has civil as well as military benefits.

asked the Secretary of State for Defence what long-term follow-up tests are arranged for Service men who volunteer to be the subject of experiments in the use of mind-bending drugs; and if any long-term adverse effects have been found in those who took part in experiments with LSD in the 1960s.

All volunteers for tests at the Chemical Defence Establishment, Porton Down, undergo stringent general medical, phsychological and psychiatric assessments before and after the tests, and continue to be subject to the usual regular health monitoring provided by the Armed Services medical branches. Where necessary, representative numbers are seen again in due course at the Chemical Defence Establishment, Porton Down. In the case of LSD, no long-term adverse effects have been discerned from any of these checks.