The American Psychiatric Association (APA)

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The American Psychiatric Association (APA), which was responsible for the DSM-5 revision, experienced problems that were traceable to the Task Force. The issue of secrecy was raised throughout the debate, as all members of the Task Force were to sign an agreement prohibiting them from publicly disclosing the contents of the report. Second, there was a conflict of interest because the DSM-5 Task Force had a 65 percent stake in the industry, which was more than the DSM-IV Task Force (Welch, Klassen, Borisova & Clothier, 2013). As a result, their conflict of interest was insufficient. There were also issues related to the implementation of a paradigm shift in psychiatric diagnosis as etiology of each model was lacking. Further, there were claims of adopting a poor methodology by the Task Force while there still facing concerns over the meaning of a mental disorder and its descriptions. Thus, this would have an impact on the validity and reliability in trials.

Regarding the DSM-5 controversies, the said secrecy was because the Work Group had an insulation. Secondly, there was no priori methodology for implementation during the DSM-5 Paraphilias. Hence, the Task Force was subject to limited diversity. Therefore, the solutions proposed for the DSM-5 controversies include exercising belief perseverance which requires one to stick to the previous conception after the current one has been discredited (Welch, Klassen, Borisova & Clothier, 2013). On the other hand, the solution to the controversy surrounding mental disorders requires that cognitive psychologists should ascertain whether clinicians work efficiently when in categories, prototypes, or dimensions. For this reason, these solutions are appropriate as they translate to a move towards an etiologically based system of classification. My proposed solution is the introduction of group polarization of the Task Force which will influence the opinions by the members and improves decision-making.


Welch, S., Klassen, C., Borisova, O., & Clothier, H. (2013). The DSM-5 controversies: How should psychologists respond?. Canadian Psychology/Psychologie Canadienne, 54(3), 166-175.

April 19, 2023

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