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22 October 2020

Empowering Minds Podcast Series: Episode 5

Psychiatric diagnosis – what is it good for?


Episode 5 of our podcast series – Empowering Minds – focuses on psychiatric diagnosis, the history of diagnostic manuals and offers a human rights-based perspective on how we think about labels. 



You can find a full transcript of the episode here.


Podcast host Jonas Bull is joined by three experts to talk about the understanding of psychiatric diagnoses and labels.


Dr. Lucy Johnstone is a consultant clinical psychologist. She explains how psychiatric diagnoses and manuals were established and explores other ways we can think about experiencing distress. She has worked in adult mental health settings for many years, most recently in a service in South Wales.


Lea Labaki has a background in human rights and is a person with lived experience. She shares her personal experience of receiving a psychiatric diagnosis and the effect it had on her life. In August she wrote about the Belgian system of psychiatric institutions, criticising coercion in mental healthcare and institiutionalisation. 


Dr. Jasna Russo is an independent scholar and a long-term activist in the international mental health service user & psychiatric survivor movement. She discusses the importance of a human rights-based approach in mental healthcare. She has worked on both survivor-controlled and collaborative research projects. 


About the series

Empowering Minds is the Brussels-based podcast from Mental Health Europe. Covering a range of mental health topics, the podcast hopes to empower people to think differently about mental health and wellbeing.


In the past three episodes, we talked about young people’s mental health, mental health and transparency regulations between doctors and the pharma industry, the use of coercive measures in mental health services and the existing solutions to end these practices. If you missed the episodes, visit our Soundcloud page, listen to Empowering Minds on iTunes, Spotify or see them here.


A short guide to psychiatric diagnosis

This short guide has been produced to help those of us who are given a diagnosis, and those closest to us, to be better