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311 is the code designated by DSM-IV for a particular class of depressive disorders. The disorders in this category include "any depressive disorder that does not meet the criteria for a specific disorder can fall under Depressive Disorder: Not Otherwise Specified (DD: NOS)."

Examples of disorders in this category include Minor Depressive Disorder and Recurrent Brief Depressive Disorder.

Concerns

Accurately assessing for a specific Depressive Disorder diagnosis requires an expenditure of time that is deemed unreasonable for most primary care physicians. For this reason, physicians often use this code as a proxy for a more thorough diagnostic assessment. There is concern that this may lead to a "waste basket" mindset for certain disorders.

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