[The use of operational criteria for evaluations of mental competency].

Hiroki Kocha

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)


Today, either the DSM-IV or the ICD-10 is generally used for forensic purposes, especially for evaluations of mental competency. The use of operational criteria, such as the DSM-IV, in forensic settings has some risks. Here, these risks, as well as the advantages of operational criteria and precautions for their use, are discussed. Compared with the DSM-IV, the ICD-10 is preferred because this tool is less likely to complicate evaluations of the mental status of a criminal at the time of the crime when sufficient information is not available to make a diagnosis. The evaluation consists of two steps. The first step, which is based on empirical science, is to provide a psychiatric diagnosis. The second step, which is based on normative science, is to allocate the diagnosis to one of four categories of a forensic frame of reference and to provide useful information for judicial members to make a judgment about the mental competency of the criminal. To standardize evaluations, the use of not only global standard criteria, but also a general rule for the judgment of mental competency within each allocated category is needed.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1057-1063
Number of pages7
JournalSeishin shinkeigaku zasshi = Psychiatria et neurologia Japonica
Issue number10
Publication statusPublished - 2013

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Medicine


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