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Different Diagnosis, Shared Vulnerabilities: The Value of Cross Disorder Validation of Capacity to Consent.

Rosen A, Weitlauf JC. Different Diagnosis, Shared Vulnerabilities: The Value of Cross Disorder Validation of Capacity to Consent. Journal of Alzheimer's Disease : Jad. 2015 Jan 1; 46(1):11-3.

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A screening measure of capacity to consent can provide an efficient method of determining the appropriateness of including individuals from vulnerable patient populations in research, particularly in circumstances in which no caregiver is available to provide surrogate consent. Seaman et al. (2015) cross-validate a measure of capacity to consent to research developed by Jeste et al. (2007). They provide data on controls, caregivers, and patients with mild cognitive impairment and dementia. The study demonstrates the importance of validating measures across disorders with different domains of incapacity, as well as the need for timely and appropriate follow-up with potential participants who yield positive screens. Ultimately clinical measures need to adapt to the dimensional diagnostic approaches put forward in DSM 5. Integrative models of constructs, such as capacity to consent, will make this process more efficient by avoiding the need to test measures in each disorder. Until then, cross-validation studies, such as the work by Seaman et al. (2015) are critical.

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