Examinees log in from any Internet-connected browser to securely complete the questionnaire. Because Psych Writer™ reports only raw data, there is no scoring, comparison, or interpretation involved and any mental health professional may use this service.
Liberal use of checkboxes and radio buttons make it easy for examinees to rapidly endorse items. Using these and other speeded features for acquiring data, the CMHQ™ online questionnaire is able to collect a large amount of information (627 items) in less time with less user fatigue than some other forms of mental health data collection. Used as an adjunct to interviewing, the CMHQ™ / Psych Writer™ system can reduce time spent in routine questioning, note-taking, and report writing. More rapid assessment may in some instances mean that treatment can begin sooner.
It is not unusual for examinees to be more frank and candid when completing a questionnaire than during face-to-face interview. This can occur even when they know their responses will later be seen by the interviewer.
By helping to identify clinical issues, Psych Writer™ can make interviews more informed, more focused, and more productive.
The questionnaire uses screening questions to help identify potential problem areas that are then either skipped or more extensively queried, depending upon the examinee's response. This reduces administration time and maintains the relevance of questions asked. The result is that different respondents take different forms of the questionnaire, based upon their particular responses.
The questionnaire allows respondents to comment upon their responses and it makes frequent use of open-ended questions. This allows a greater range of expression than is available using traditional close-ended questions or forced-choice responses. Examinees can elaborate on their responses and describe matters in their own words. They can relate information that is not specifically queried. Open-ended questions and comments can yield some of the most unexpected and valuable information for understanding an examinee's experience.
Systematic and thorough
As with a structured interview, CMHQ™ items are methodically presented in the same manner and sequence for each examinee. Results are consistently reported. This systematic and thorough data collection can reduce the possibility that an important area of investigation is overlooked.
More efficient and rapid data collection can reduce assessment time and cost.
Improved treatment planning
By reporting mental health risk factors and the details of personal functioning, Psych Writer™ provides vital information about the causes of an examinee's difficulties that can help to identify the most fruitful avenues of treatment.
The CMHQ™ actively involves the examinee in the assessment process, asking them to reflect upon their mental health and various factors that may have contributed to their difficulties. This can begin the groundwork of helping examinees to think about their problems in terms of cause and effect. Queries about thinking and behavior can introduce the idea that these may become a focus of treatment. The questionnaire can thus help prepare examinees for the work of change.
If you use Microsoft Word to open the Clinical Report and then access the navigation pane (Ctrl-f), you will see hypertext links on the left side of the screen that make navigation between headings easy.
Risk Factor Report
Every report ends with a summary of identified mental health risk factors in four domains: biological risk factors, stressful life experience, thinking, and behavior. This concise outline facilitates analysis for both the writer and the reader of the report. You may find that this outline saves you the tedium of repeating yourself and writing a text summary.