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'The Health of the Nation': the impact of personality disorder on 'key areas'.
  1. K. R. Norton
  1. Henderson Hospital, Sutton, Surrey, UK.


    The purpose of this response paper is to document a form of mental illness, namely, personality disorder: (1) whose impact is far-reaching, impinging on different 'key areas' identified in 'The Health of the Nation' (The Health of the Nation: A Consultative Document. HMSO, London, 1991), including: eating and drinking habits, smoking, prevention of accidents, human immunodeficiency (HIV)/acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (AIDS), and other mental illness itself; (2) which tends to be underdiagnosed by health-care professionals in spite of its aetiological relationship to other 'key areas' (as above); (3) which tends to be associated with negative therapeutic attitude in spite of well-documented, albeit specialist, treatment expertise; (4) which, importantly, transmits psychopathology from one generation to the next and hence has a pivotal role to play in prevention; and (5) which, for the reasons enumerated above, could form a 'target' for various, measurable, interventions.

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