During the ongoing COVID-19 Public Health Emergency, more behavioral health providers are delivering services by using a variety of telehealth solutions. These services often include assessments for depression, anxiety, and mood disorders.
For new behavioral health clients, most providers conduct an assessment to help determine the extent of their symptoms and possible treatment options. Providers also may give assessments to current clients to monitor their progress.
Here’s an overview of assessment tools that can be delivered through telehealth. Each of these surveys can be found in BestNotes’ Questionnaire Library, along with links to additional information.
Depression, Anxiety, and Stress Scale (DASS21)
The DASS21 is a 21-item, self-report questionnaire that provides three scores, one each for depression, anxiety, and tension/stress. Individuals read each statement and circle the number 0, 1, 2, or 3, depending on how much the statement applies to him or her in the past week. This is a shorter version of the 42-item DASS, which is in the public domain.
Research suggests that the DASS-21 may be suitable for depression screening in substance use disorder clients, when administered soon after detoxification, although additional research is needed.
Generalized Anxiety Disorder-7 (GAD-7)
GAD-7 is a self-administered patient questionnaire used by both mental health and primary care providers to screen for, and measure the symptom severity of, the four most common anxiety disorders. This includes Generalized Anxiety Disorder, Panic Disorder, Social Phobia, and Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder.
Clients who receive the assessment are asked to write or circle the number 0, 1, 2, or 3 to indicate how often they have been bothered by seven problems in the last two weeks. The total score can range from 0 to 21. Cut-off scores for mild, moderate, and severe anxiety symptoms are 5, 10, and 15, respectively.
Major Depression Inventory (MDI)
The World Health Organization developed the MDI, a self-report mood questionnaire, to be able to generate an ICD-10 or DSM-IV diagnosis of clinical depression. It also helps measure the severity of depression symptoms. Similar to the GAD-7, it asks the client how he or she has been feeling over the last two weeks.
Zung Anxiety Self-Assessment Scale (SAS)
The SAS is a 20-item, self-report assessment designed to quantify an individual’s anxiety level. The scoring is based on four types of manifestations: cognitive, autonomic, motor, and central nervous system symptoms. The scores range from 20-80, with Normal Range, Mild to Moderate Anxiety Levels, Marked to Severe Anxiety Levels, and Extreme Anxiety Levels.
Zung Self-Rating Depression Scale (SDS)
The Zung SDS is a 20-item, self-report questionnaire used to screen for depression. This tool includes affective, psychological, and somatic symptoms. Most people with depression score between 50 and 69, while a score of 70 and above indicates severe depression.
The Patient Health Questionnaire (PHQ)-9
The PHQ-9 is a single, depression-focused module of the full Patient Health Questionnaire. The PHQ-9 is used in primary and mental health settings to screen for and diagnose depression, as well as determine the severity of symptoms. This self-administered questionnaire scores the frequency of each of the nine DSM-IV depression criteria, from 0-3.
These standardized questionnaires are also used with OutcomeTools, which helps behavioral health organizations track their effectiveness and client outcomes. With BestNotes EHR solutions, you can also develop and use your own custom questionnaires. Contact us today to learn more.