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World Psychiatry. 2011 Jun;10(2):86-92.

A conceptual framework for the revision of the ICD-10 classification of mental and behavioural disorders.


The World Health Organization (WHO) is revising the ICD-10 classification of mental and behavioural disorders, under the leadership of the Department of Mental Health and Substance Abuse and within the framework of the overall revision framework as directed by the World Health Assembly. This article describes WHO's perspective and priorities for mental and behavioural disorders classification in ICD-11, based on the recommendations of the International Advisory Group for the Revision of ICD-10 Mental and Behavioural Disorders. The WHO considers that the classification should be developed in consultation with stakeholders, which include WHO member countries, multidisciplinary health professionals, and users of mental health services and their families. Attention to the cultural framework must be a key element in defining future classification concepts. Uses of the ICD that must be considered include clinical applications, research, teaching and training, health statistics, and public health. The Advisory Group has determined that the current revision represents a particular opportunity to improve the classification's clinical utility, particularly in global primary care settings where there is the greatest opportunity to identify people who need mental health treatment. Based on WHO's mission and constitution, the usefulness of the classification in helping WHO member countries, particularly low- and middle-income countries, to reduce the disease burden associated with mental disorders is among the highest priorities for the revision. This article describes the foundation provided by the recommendations of the Advisory Group for the current phase of work.


International Classification of Diseases; Mental disorders; classification; clinical utility; cross-cultural applicability

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