Tuesday, March 2, 2021

Comments by kelsallpeter

Showing 1 of 1 comments.

  • I’m a trainee psychiatrist working in England. Having read the statement, I find little to disagree with, and I think that the action points are fairly uncontroversial. At the same time, I still think diagnoses are useful, despite their flaws and limitations (some more than others).

    I am quite explicit in discussions with my patients* that the diagnoses we use are based on collections of thoughts, feelings, behaviours, and biological symptoms (that for the sake of convenience we group together as symptoms) that it has been noticed sometimes are grouped together, and that they are mainly a way of looking at things which is useful in terms of making an educated guess at what treatment (which may be medication, psychological therapy or social interventions) may be most useful. From reading some of your previous notes I can see you would disagree with my view that they are useful, but you must acknowledge that there are arguments in favour of their utility and validity (which I’m sure you have heard before, sometimes from psychologists).

    I’m quite curious that you said the statement was “calling for the end of the unevidenced biomedical model”, as the phrase “paradigm shift” used in the document seems slightly more equivocal, and the action points seem far less dramatic. Are you of the opinion that the document shouuld have included a point saying something of the lines of “there should be a campaign by the DCP for psychiatrists to abandon diagnoses altogether”? And if so why was there not such a statement?

    *(I am aware that many readers may dislike the term patient, but I won’t dishonestly pretend not to use the word for the sake of an online forum- the arguments over terminology have been done to death!)