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J Epidemiol Community Health. 1994 Apr;48(2):207-10.

Assessing psychiatric disorder with a human interviewer or a computer.

Author information

1
Institute of Psychiatry, London.

Abstract

OBJECTIVE:

To compare a self administered computerised assessment of neurotic psychiatric disorder (psychiatric morbidity) with an identical assessment administered by a human interviewer. In particular, to discover whether a computerised assessment overestimates or underestimates the prevalence of psychiatric morbidity in relation to a human interviewer.

SETTING:

A health centre in south east London, UK.

SUBJECTS:

A non-consecutive series of health centre attenders. Complete data were available on 92 subjects.

DESIGN:

All subjects received both assessments on the same occasion but were randomised to receive either the computerised assessment first or the human interview first.

RESULTS:

The mean total score on the assessment was the same for both methods of administration; computer 8.77 v human 8.69 (95% confidence interval for difference -0.70, 0.87). The correlation between the human and interviewer assessments was 0.91.

CONCLUSION:

Self administered computerised assessments are valid, unbiased measures of psychiatric morbidity. In addition to their use as a research tool, they have potential uses in primary care including screening for psychiatric morbidity and in forming the basis for clinical guidelines.

PMID:
8189180
PMCID:
PMC1059935
DOI:
10.1136/jech.48.2.207
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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