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June 25, 2003

Measuring Functional Status and Disability in Older AdultsMeasuring Functional Status and Disability in Older Adults

Author Affiliations

Letters Section Editor: Stephen J. Lurie, MD, PhD, Senior Editor.

JAMA. 2003;289(24):3239. doi:10.1001/jama.289.24.3239-a

To the Editor: In their systematic review of recent trends in disability and functioning among older adults, Dr Freedman and colleagues1 rated the methodological quality of our study2 as "poor." I am concerned that some of the information cited in the text to justify the rating is inaccurate. In the text, they describe a change in mode of administration in our study as "in-person to over the telephone." In fact, the actual change occurred with the offspring cohort: from interviewer administration in the original Framingham Heart Study cohort to self-administration in the offspring cohort. Also in their text, Freedman et al reported that we made "extensive question changes." Those changes, in fact, were made only in questions about activities of daily living (ADL). Although in both cases, Freedman et al provided correct information in their Table 2, the text used to justify the rating was incorrect.

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