Assessment of patients referred for psychotherapy has more commonly consisted of a psychodynamic assessment with less emphasis on a formal psychiatric diagnosis, whereas the reverse tends to be the case in the general psychiatric services. Within the National Health Service there are close links between the two services. A common frame of reference regarding the definition of the patient groups using the services could Improve communication, the planning and evaluation of specific treatment programmes, and outcome studies. A retrospective case-note study was carried out at a regional psychotherapy unit in order to define the population referred between 1991 and 1992 according to ICD–10 (WHO, 1992).
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