Community Mental Health Journal

, Volume 6, Issue 2, pp 110–117

Diagnostic bias in community mental health

  • Maurice K. Temerlin

DOI: 10.1007/BF01434656

Cite this article as:
Temerlin, M.K. Community Ment Health J (1970) 6: 110. doi:10.1007/BF01434656


Mental health professionals and nonprofessionals observed an interview with a healthy man after hearing a renowned mental health professional, acting as a confederate, characterize him as psychotic. Both professional and nonprofessional subjects then tended to diagnose the healthy man as mentally ill, even though his behavior was healthy by multiple criteria. The biasing effect of prestige suggestion upon diagnosis is discussed in terms of the efficacy of psychiatric diagnosis to community mental health.

Copyright information

© Behavioral Publications, Inc. 1970

Authors and Affiliations

  • Maurice K. Temerlin
    • 1
  1. 1.University of OklahomaNorman

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