For 60 years psychiatrists and other mental health professionals have been using the American Psychiatric Association’s “Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders” (DSM) as the “bible” for diagnosing mental diseases and disorders. Health and disability insurance providers use the DSM in deciding what conditions and treatments to cover, as do government agencies in determining eligibility for benefits and services. These and other factors make the DSM an unusually powerful document.
The latest DSM revision (the DSM-5) is set for release later this month. It creates several new mental disorders and broadens the definition of a number of existing ones. These changes will affect employers in a variety of ways, from expanded protection under the ADA and FMLA to increased benefit costs.