Document Type


Publication Date



In May 2013, the American Psychiatric Association released the fifth edition of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (“DSM-5”). Among other changes, the DSM-5 includes new entries for hoarding disorder and premenstrual dysphoric disorder as well as a reclassified entry for gambling disorder. Using these changes as examples, this Article examines the implications of the DSM-5 for key issues in health law, including health insurance coverage, public and private disability benefit eligibility, and disability discrimination protection. As a descriptive matter, this Article illustrates how the addition of new disorders and the reclassification of existing disorders in the DSM-5 can significantly impact health insurance coverage and has some relevance to disability benefit eligibility and disability discrimination protection. From a normative perspective, this Article offers guidelines designed to prevent attorneys, judges, and other nonclinicians from abusing the DSM-5 in civil and administrative health law proceedings.

Publication Citation

2015 Utah L. Rev. 767 (2015).