The American Psychiatric Association is making some major changes in what is generally considered "the bible" of mental disorders, illnesses, diagnoses and subsequent treatments - The Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders . Currently used is the 4th edition, the 5th - with these possible changes, is due in 2013.
What is so important about this Manual is that it guides doctors to diagnose and treat patients and is instrumental in how insurance companies pay doctors and hospitals for treatment. Based on the Manual, they may pay in full, in part, or bill the patient entirely.
What's changing - what's not?
Asperger's may remain under Autism, despite many wanting it to be given a different, and specific category. Since most people with Asperger's are high functioning and generally do well in life, advocates want it separated from 'general' autism to remove a stigma they believe lies in the Autism classification.
Many doctor's disagree with this mindset.
Another new diagnosis on the books is "psychosis risk syndrome," which states that there is a fairly high (20%) likelihood a person with this syndrome may go on to develop full blown schizophrenia. Doctors think it's important that this syndrome be implemented in the Manual in order to help doctors recognize the symptoms and risks of psychosis risk syndrome and watch carefully for more serious developments.
Others think it's a dangerous classification that many cause patients to lose jobs, scholarships or school placements for fear of being unable to cope or having uncontrolled breakdowns in school/on the job.
There are also increased fears that new diagnoses, classifications and labels will become a boom to pharmaceutical companies who will use the DSM5 to create even more money making opportunities using new kinds of medications and garner huge money making patents.
With regard to addiction, changes are being made there too. While sex and porn compulsions are not considered addictions, other behaviors are. Again, this will impact how treatment is given and how insurance companies pay.
Other classifications like intellectual disabilities, dementia and learning disorders may seen changes.
For more information on the new Manual, click here : www.DSM5.org
Note : No final decision have been made at this time.
Do you think you, or someone you know, will be affected by the new DSM5 diagnoses if they are, in fact, accepted by the American Psychiatric Association? How will these changes affect you?
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