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NAMI Comments on the APA's Draft DSM-V

The NAMI Board of Directors has posted five papers with specific recommendations concerning the first draft of the DSM-V (Diagnostic and Statistical Manual – Fifth Edition).  The DSM is published by the American Psychiatric Association (APA) and is used by psychiatrists, other mental health providers, and health care practitioners to diagnose and plan treatment for people with a variety of mental disorders.  The papers posted on the NAMI Web site address the following topics.

• Psychosis Risk Syndrome;
• Temper Dysregulation Disorder with Dysphoria (a new diagnosis proposed in the draft DSM-V);
• Substance Use Disorder;
• The six month durational requirement for diagnosing Schizophrenia; and
• Anosognosia. 

These were the topics that the NAMI Board identified as the highest priority.  The papers can be found below. 

The APA released the first draft of the DSM-V on February 10, 2010.  This draft and related information about the DSM can be found at The deadline for submitting comments about the draft DSM-V is April 20th, 2010.  NAMI will be submitting comments based on the five papers described above.     

The five papers were prepared by a working group established by the NAMI Board to provide it with guidance on the DSM-V.  The working group consulted with a number of experts and spent many hours reviewing the proposals and related scientific literature in drafting the papers.

If you would like to submit your own comments to the APA, here is the procedure for doing so. 

1)  Log on to the DSM-V Web site.

2)  Register (and remember your user name).

3)  Receive a password by email.

4)  Return to the Web site and click on “Proposed Draft Revisions to DSM Disorders and Criteria.”

5)  From the right side of the screen, choose “Participate.”  Type in your user name and password.

6)  Click on the topic you are interested in, for example “Schizophrenia and other Psychotic Disorders.”

7)  Choose the item you are interested in.

8)  Fill in the comment box at the bottom.   

Please direct comments or questions about NAMI’s papers to Bianca Ruffin at

Related Files

Anosognosia Paper (PDF) (PDF File)
Risk Syndrome Paper (PDF) (PDF File)
Schizophrenia & Duration Paper (PDF) (PDF File)
Substance Use Disorder Paper (PDF) (PDF File)
TDD Paper (PDF) (PDF File)