The Elephant in the Room Series Two: WHO Guide to Mental and Neurological Health in Primary Care


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The Elephant in the Room Series Two: WHO Guide to Mental and Neurological Health in Primary Care

31 March 2009

Connie Nelson reports via Co-Cure:

On 5th March 2009 I contacted Professor Rachel Jenkins of the WHO Collaborating Centre for Research and Training in Mental Health and Section of Mental Health Policy about misinformation contained in the 2nd of edition of what’s commonly referred to as the WHO GUIDE, 2nd edition.

Although I have received a courteous reply from Professor Jenkins the misinformation has not yet been corrected but hopefully this will happen soon. I will keep you updated on this situation.

Connie Nelson’s correspondence with WHO Collaborating Centre, Institute of Psychology, King’s College London (05.03.09):

I recently noticed the following statement on the homepage of the WHO Guide to Mental and Neurological Health in Primary Care:

“The diagnostic and management summaries it contains are based on the WHO International Diagnostic and Management Guidelines for Mental Disorders in Primary Care and are wholly compatible with ICD-10 Chapter V which is the diagnostic framework used by psychiatric professionals.”

and wish to enquire about its accuracy due to various disorders being neurological rather than mental and subsequently not included in ICD10 Chapter V.

Given that the misclassification of CFS (ME) in the 1st edition of the Guide led to an erratum notice being placed on the RSM Press website makes it even more disappointing to find that CFS is once again being confused with chronic fatigue.

“Unexplained medical symptoms (including chronic fatigue)
Unexplained medical symptoms – F45.0 including chronic fatigue – G93.3”

In addition, the same web page wrongly instructs the reader to:

“Click here for a discussion of coding of chronic fatigue”

(a mental disorder, F48.0) when in actual fact it leads to a page on, Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (CFS or CFS/ME) a neurological disorder (G93.3)

I wish to request an urgent amendment to the homepage and all other pages on which the term chronic fatigue is inaccurately coded as G93.3 as below. I also wish to request that an erratum slip be produced too for the 2nd edition guide in book format.