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November 1989

Reliability of Clinical Nurse Specialists in the Staging of Dementia

Author Affiliations

From the Alzheimer's Disease Research Center (Sr McCulla, Ms Coats, and Drs Grant and Morris), Department of Neurology and Neurological Surgery (Neurology) (Sr McCulla, Mss Coats and Van Fleet, and Dr Morris), School of Occupational Therapy (Dr Duchek), Division of Biostatistics (Dr Grant), and Department of Pathology (Neuropathology) (Dr Morris), Washington University School of Medicine, St Louis, Mo.

Arch Neurol. 1989;46(11):1210-1211. doi:10.1001/archneur.1989.00520470070029

• We studied the reliability of master's-prepared clinical nurse specialists for the identification and staging of dementia, using videotapes of physician assessments of both healthy older persons and those with senile dementia of the Alzheimer type. The Washington University (St Louis, Mo) Clinical Dementia Rating system was the staging instrument. The results from three nurses, each reviewing 25 videotaped assessments, indicate that agreement is high between clinical nurse specialists and physicians for the presence and severity of dementia (κ =.75). This study suggests that clinical nurse specialists can use the Clinical Dementia Rating scale effectively, and thus reliably identify and stage dementia.

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