British Journal of Clinical Psychology

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Volume 35 Issue 4 (November 1996), Pages i-i, 487-646

A psychometric analysis of a short device for assessing depression in elderly people (pages 543-551)

The Schwab‐Gilleard Depression Scale is a short self‐report index for assessing depression in elderly people. The aim of this study is to investigate the psychometric properties of this device with particular reference to its reliability, criterion validity and ability to discriminate depression from dementia. The total sample comprised 166 elderly people living in Part III residential homes in south‐west London. For 111 of these, the Schwab‐Gilleard Depression Scale (SGDS), the Geriatric Depression Scale (GDS), the Short‐Comprehensive Assessment and Referral Evaluation (CARE), and the Clifton Assessment Procedures for the Elderly (CAPE) were completed. The GDS and CAPE only were completed with the remaining 55 participants. Psychiatric diagnoses were available from the medical notes on each resident. In addition, a subsample of 49 had been assessed using the SGDS and CARE 14 months previously. These data were available for test‐retest analyses. The self‐rating SGDS was found to be a reliable and valid measure of depression and is recommended for use as a screening tool for depression in elderly people in residential homes.

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