a1 Harvard Program in Psychiatric Epidemiology, Department of Psychiatry, Massachusetts General Hospital, Harvard Medical School, Boston, Massachusetts, USA
A computer programme (DPAX) was constructed for a longitudinal study of psychiatric epidemiology in Stirling County (Canada). It identifies disorders involving the syndromes of depression and anxiety based on responses given in structured questionnaire interviews. The programme follows a diagnostic algorithm that uses criteria for: (1) essential features; (2) number, frequency, and pattern of associated symptoms; (3) impairment; and (4) duration. The programme reproduces case evaluations provided by psychiatrists, as conveyed by a sensitivity of 92% and a specificity of 98%.
c1 Address for correspondence: Dr Jane M. Murphy, Harvard Program in Psychiatric Epidemiology, 715 Warren Building, Massachusetts General Hospital, Boston, MA 02114, USA.
p1 Present address: Department of Community and Family Medicine, Dartmouth Medical School, Hanover, New Hampshire, USA.
p2 Present address: Department of Behavioral Sciences, Harvard School of Public Health, Boston, Massachusetts, USA.
p3 Present address: Commonwealth of Massachusetts, Office of Management Information Services, Boston, Massachusetts, USA.
p4 Present address: Harvard Health Sciences Computing Facility, Harvard School of Public Health, Boston, Massachusetts, USA.