Why Psychiatrists Should Sign The Petition To Reform DSM-5

I posted an article by Allen Frances MD, (psychiatrist and former chair of the DSM-IV Task Force and currently professor emeritus at Duke) yesterday that was posted on Psychology Today.  The article below is posted on Psychiatric Times and is penned to his fellow psychiatrists. I suggest sharing this with every psychiatrist that you know or work with.

Why Psychiatrists Should Sign The Petition To Reform DSM-5

Psychiatrists may be more reluctant than are other mental health clinicians to sign a petition questioning the safety and value of DSM-5. After all, it is the American Psychiatric Association that is sponsoring DSM-5 and there is a natural tendency to want to trust the wisdom of one’s own Association. We also tend to feel the greatest loyalty to our profession when it seems to be under sharp attack from without.

All this is completely understandable to me. I have not felt the least bit comfortable assuming the role fate assigned me as critic of DSM-5 and of the APA. It was a case of responsibility calling and my feeling compelled to answer. If DSM-5 were not proposing some really dangerous changes, I would have stayed comfortably on the sidelines. But I think DSM-5 is too risky to ignore and that all psychiatrists should feel the same call that I did to restrain it before it is too late.

What needs top be done to get a safe and credible DSM-5? Clearly, an independent review is needed to evaluate about a dozen of the most radical DSM-5 proposals—the ones that are bad for patients and bad for the credibility of APA and psychiatry. The petition urges that APA to take the necessary step of reevaluating the most questionable proposals before they are set in stone. The APA’s own internal review process has failed to be rigorous or independent enough to convince anyone outside of the small (and out of touch) circle of the DSM-5 and APA leadership. (finish the article here) free registration is required

You can read and sign the petition here.


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