Psychiatric Quarterly

, Volume 87, Issue 4, pp 649–662 | Cite as

Patient and Clinician Assessments of Symptomatology Changes on Older Adults Following a Psycho-educational Program for Depression and Anxiety

  • Angela Potes
  • Genevieve Gagnon
  • El Hadj Touré
  • Michel Perreault
Original Paper


Important attention has been given to the assessment of patients’ perspectives on treatment, especially as outcomes have been typically evaluated by clinicians. This study examined the association between patient and clinician ratings on perceived improvement and symptomatology changes for an older adult population participating in an ongoing psycho-educational program. Pre-post measures including depression (GDS), anxiety (BAI) and general well-being (GWBS) were collected in a sample of 34 older adults (age = 71.32 ± 6.46 years). Post-testing data included perceived improvement rated by patients, and clinician assessment of depressive symptoms (CS-GDS). Results indicate significant correlations between pre-post changes of the GDS and patients’ PIQ (r = −0.37, n = 31, p < 0.05), but not on symptomatic changes of the BAI (r = 0.012, n = 32, p > 0.05) or the GWBS (r = 0.12, n = 31, p > 0.05). Relationships between patients’ PIQ and post-ratings on GDS (r = -0.74, n = 33, p < 0.05) and CS-GDS (r = -0.48, n = 32, p < 0.05) are also significant. Results imply that pre-post improvement in depressive symptoms is associated with a patient’s perceived improvement and that clinician and patient ratings on depression symptoms post-treatment were both inversely correlated to patients’ perceived improvement. Findings suggest that the PIQ is a good indicator to assess symptomatic change by patients and clinicians although they are possibly placing attention on different aspects of treatment outcome, as indicated by differences on sub-scales of the PIQ. Clinicians possibly place a strong focus on assessments of depression symptomatology. Future studies may integrate simultaneous assessments of instruments exploring aspects other than depression, especially those examining representations of illness in older adults.


Older adults Depression Anxiety Treatment outcome Perceived improvement 



Special thanks to all clinicians and patients involved for their volunteer time and significant contributions to the program. The authors would like to thank Louise Bénard for her contribution in the organization of the article’s content.


For the preparation of the manuscript, the first author received training at the Douglas Mental Health University Institute and McGill University. Funding was received by the Geriatric Psychiatry Division Chief Administrator at the Douglas Mental Health University Institute.

Compliance with Ethical Standards

Conflict of Interest

All authors (Angela Potes, Genevieve Gagnon, El Hadj Touré, and Michel Perreault) declare that they have no conflict of interest.

Ethical approval

All procedures performed in studies involving human participants were in accordance with the ethical standards of the institutional and/or national research committee and with the 1964 Helsinki declaration and its later amendments or comparable ethical standards. This article does not contain any studies with animals performed by any of the authors.

Informed consent

Informed consent was obtained from all individual participants included in the study. All participants signed a consent form approved by the Douglas Mental Health University Institute Review Board.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  • Angela Potes
    • 1
  • Genevieve Gagnon
    • 2
    • 3
    • 4
  • El Hadj Touré
    • 5
  • Michel Perreault
    • 6
    • 7
  1. 1.Department of Psychiatry, Douglas Mental Health University InstituteMcGill UniversityMontréalCanada
  2. 2.Geriatric PsychiatryDouglas Mental Health University InstituteMontréalCanada
  3. 3.McGill University Research Centre for Studies in AgingMontréalCanada
  4. 4.Institute and Research CenterMcGill UniversityMontréalCanada
  5. 5.Douglas Mental Health University InstituteMontréalCanada
  6. 6.Douglas Mental Health University InstituteMontréalCanada
  7. 7.Department of PsychiatryMcGill UniversityMontréalCanada

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