A Straight-Talking Introduction to Psychiatric Diagnosis
ISBN 978 1 906254 66 7 (2014)
Read 11 oustanding 5-star customer reviews on Amazon here
Psychiatric diagnosis has become one of the most contested practices in mental health services today. Lucy Johnstone asks 'Do you still need your psychiatric diagnosis?' This book will help you to decide. A revolution is underway in mental health. If the authors of the diagnostic manuals are admitting that psychiatric diagnoses are not supported by evidence, then no one should be forced to accept them. If many mental health workers are openly questioning diagnosis and saying we need a different and better system, then service users and carers should be allowed to do so too. This book is about choice. It is about giving people the information to make up their own minds, and exploring alternatives for those who wish to do so.
Series introduction by Richard Bentall and Pete Sanders
1. What this book aims to do
2. Psychiatric diagnosis: The current context
3. What are the problems with psychiatric diagnosis?
4. For and against psychiatric diagnosis in more detail
5. The wider impact of psychiatric diagnosis
6. The personal impact of psychiatric diagnosis
7. An alternative to psychiatric diagnosis – Finding your own story
8. Personal stories
9. Next steps in developing a personal story
Read 10 outstanding 5-star customer reviews on Amazon here
This book is simply fantastic. An absolute must read for anyone and everyone working in or accessing support from mental health services. Buy it! Amazon reviewer, January 2015
An excellent overview of the key issues regarding psychiatric diagnosis, drawing on theory, evidence and personal testimony. Expertly written, engaging and a must have for all connected to mental health services. Amazon reviewer, November 2014
Some of Lucy Johnstone's best writing to date. It is a triumph of plain English, and my 15 years of work as a mental health nurse make the truths here resonate all the more strongly with me. … It is a slim volume which contains a huge amount of thought-provoking and accessible material. Amazon reviewer, March 2015
Rigorously researched, powerfully argued, and engagingly written, this thoughtful and valuable book empowers readers with something too often missing in statutory services – the knowledge and resources to make an informed choice. Eleanor Longden, Psychosis Research Group, University of Liverpool, UK.
Making sense of personal experiences promotes hope, strength and recovery. This is the message from Lucy Johnstone as an alternative to the biomedical language that keeps mental health care in a stranglehold. She carefully deconstructs psychiatric diagnosis and adds personal stories as evidence. Dirk Corstens, Psychiatrist, Chair of Intervoice.
… the book is concise, well written and with full references. Johnstone states the arguments clearly and lays our short chapters giving a well-balanced mix of theory, research evidence and personal experience … The book should be useful in the training of all psychiatrists, for continuing professional development (CPD) and for team development. Brian Martindale, consultant psychiatrist and psychotherapist. RCP Bulletin, August 2015
It's magnificent book, which encapsulates and nails the paradigm shift [in mental health] in clear, informative, no nonsense and highly readable ways. It's great on established and emerging alternatives to diagnosis and responding to human misery, and as a rich and detailed resource. Following the BPS Division of Clinical Psychology’s position statement on the 13th May last year I've been looking forward to reading this text for months and I haven't been disappointed. I've already started to reference it in journal articles, and promoting it among my students, and user, survivor and academic colleagues. Dr. A. Grant, Reader in Narrative Mental Health, School of Health Sciences, University of Brighton.