A diagnosis is the identifying label for a medical or psychological disorder, which is given based on agreed-on criteria. Diagnoses are important in all areas of health care, and if they are to be useful in clinical practice, they should be both (a) reliable, such that independent assessors converge on the same diagnosis given a set of symptoms, and (b) valid. Diagnostic reliability aids in communication between all key stakeholders (e.g., clinicians, patients, families, insurance companies) in that it provides succinct labels that serve as a common language for describing collections of symptoms and perhaps allude to etiology, prognosis, and treatment options. Diagnostic validity suggests that the cluster of symptoms is representative of an actual (vs. arbitrary) phenomenon that is distinguishable from other disorders or ...

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