On Being Sane In Insane Places Summary

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Upon reading the scholarly article by D. L. Rosenhan titled, On Being Sane in Insane Places, I thought it brought up many important points about the mental health system. On a purely emotional standpoint, I was appalled at the cruelty the mental health professionals treated patients. Rosenhan made many powerful claims; yet, upon examination of the article of how he obtained his data, it became apparent the credibility of his data was questionable. Despite this, his claims against the validity of psychiatry diagnoses are damning. In essence, Rosenhan was stating the negative repressions of psychiatry diagnoses, even though it was already widely known that certain psychiatry diagnoses have low reliability and validity; which was already discussed …show more content…
He makes this conclusion based on the incompetence of the mental health professionals themselves, and how loosely the DSM can be interpreted. Yet these conclusions are based on a prior version of the DSM, and there were several components to his sample and experiment that could have introduced biased, and therefore not accurately represented the population. These components include a disproportionate ratio of private to public hospitals, the fact he included himself and people of similar backgrounds and expectations into his experiment, his subjects could have influenced the results by publically displaying their observing and writing behaviors, and one experiment showed evidence of convenience sampling. Additionally, Rosenhan’s experiments and the conclusions that he made from them could have seriously damaged the people involved reputations, self-concept, and vocations among others. Despite these pitfalls, Rosenhan did invite insight into the how a mental health hospital functioned such that improvements can be made in the education of these professionals, and how to increase patient contact, treatment and well

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