Whoâ€™s Crazy Here Anyways In 1973, David Rosenhan conducted a study to determine the nature of labeling and diagnostic testing in mental health hospitals. Rosenhan questioned if the patients determined if they were mentally ill, or if the mental illness symptoms were directly related to the present situation. Rosenhan decided that the best way to conduct these experiments were to have pseudopatients give a false name and false occupation when meeting for their appointment. Those pseudopatients were also instructed to claim that they heard voices that only said one of three choice words, but all other information provided was truthful. Once admitted to the hospital, the pseudopatients were instructed to act normally and take notes. Note taking secrecy was proved to be an invalid method because staff members deemed it as a normal symptom of schizophrenia. The patients found that once they were labelled, staff members often ignored them other than a brief kind gesture before moving on without waiting for a response. Staff
members often saw the patients as not being real human beings and more that they were just existing crazies in a confined environment. Once Rosenhanâ€™s publication was released, many hospitals criticized that pseudopatients would be exposed prior to being admitted to the hospital. The results showed that they tried to claim that about a quarter of the patients that tried to be admitted were pseudopatients, when in reality Rosenhan had not sent any pseudopatients to those hospitals in that particular three month stretch. The results of this study have shown that our mental health diagnostic criteria is broken and people are often discriminated against once
they are labelled. In many cases, once on the proper medications, patients are capable of leading normal lives out in the real world. It is often the environment and the situations that people find themselves in that cause these symptoms of mental illness. Psychology comes into play because once people are removed from the environment that is agitating them, they often times return to how they normally act. Staff members have been found to be complacent in their field of work and they donâ€™t treat every person individually, they often throw each person into a particular category and forget about them. Staff members subconsciously discriminate against these patients as a result of the labels assigned to them. Consequently, patients do not receive the individual attention that they require to become functioning members of society.
Published on Mar 10, 2018