Pam Armstrong
Council for Information on Tranquillisers, Antidepressants, and Painkillers

2003: Pam was invited by NICE (National Institute for Clinical Excellence) to take part in their technology analysis regarding the comparison between 'Z' drugs and benzodiazepines, and this was deemed to give a great deal of credibility to both Pam and to CITA.


For the last fifteen years CITAp has run benzodiazepine withdrawal clinics commissioned by Primary Care Trusts, and this work has been recognised as highly effective and value for money. The work is carried out by a team of six trained counsellors who were trained and initially supervised by Pam. These trained counsellors also run the CITAp helpline, which has run since January 1987.

The CITAp meeting has also run since 1987 and is staffed by qualified CITAp personel.

As the years have gone on, Pam and CITAp have gained more and more recognition for their unusual level of knowledge regarding prescribed medication.

In 2007 Pam Armstrong was invited to give written evidence to the Prescribed Drug Review, chaired by Dr Brian Iddon MP, and in June 2008 Pam gave evidence in person to this enquiry, which has led to the work of CITAp being regarded as examples of good practice by the Department of Health, and has resulted in a visit from Ann Grosskurth from the Department of Health, who spent two days looking at the work of CITAp.

Pam Armstrong was regarded as the most effective trainer of Health Professionals and ran training for six PCTs, and Liverpool University training medical students.

Pam also acted as an expert witness and was listed in the expert witness directory giving evidence regarding the effects of mind altering medication on behaviour.

Unfortunately Pam passed away on 15th November 2010.

Pam Armstrong was a nurse and midwife with a degree in Psychology and Social Studies, and qualifications in counselling, anxiety management, and acupuncture.

1987: Pam co-founded the Council for Involuntary Tranquilliser Addiction (CITA) with Peter Ritson; an ex-benzodiazepine user and business man.

1992: Pam wrote "Back to Life"; a text book helping those addicted to benzodiazepines, and also a book, it was hoped, would increase the knowledge of health professionals. This book was later updated in 2007 to include antidepressants. At this point it also became available online, as did the book written by Peter Ritson about his own experience, entitled "Alive and Kicking".

1993: Pam was awarded a Churchill Fellowship which enabled her to travel to the USA and spend time at Stanford University, San Francisco, and at the Betty Ford Clinic, Palm Springs. This allowed her to share information regarding addiction to benzodiazepines.

1994: Pam was awarded a further scholarship to travel to Italy, to look into the use of acupuncture to help with benzodiazepine addiction and anxiety management. This scholarship was awarded by SCODA (Studying Conference On Drug Addiction), and led Pam to train in acupuncture, which she still uses in her work today.

R.I.P. 15 November 2010