Diagnostic thinking has a powerful and pervasive impact on mental health services, structuring guidelines (such as the UK National Institute of Health and Care Excellence – NICE), research, administrative systems and care pathways. This chapter will examine the diagnosis-driven ‘evidence base’, which has become prescriptive for practice, not only in mental health, but also more widely across social care and education. Focusing on childhood psychiatric diagnoses such as attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), autism and conduct disorder, the evidence base that supports (or otherwise) the scientific validity and clinical utility of using a diagnostic framework will be critically evaluated with particular reference to NICE guidelines. Ideas on how practice may develop in a direction that is effective, humane and more compatible with the scientific evidence will be outlined. For decades, concerned scientists and clinicians have called for a re-evaluation of the preeminent role of psychiatric diagnosis in organising and delivering mental health services.
Swipe to navigate through the chapters of this book
Please log in to get access to this content
To get access to this content you need the following product:
- Non-Diagnostic Practice in Child and Adolescent Mental Health
- Macmillan Education UK
- Sequence number
- Chapter number