McLean Introduces New Tool to Measure Effectiveness of Care

September 01, 2004

Cynthia Lepore

Belmont, MA - McLean Hospital has begun licensing a new 24-item, patient self-report questionnaire to psychiatric and mental health providers around the world. The BASIS-24 survey is designed to assess treatment outcomes by measuring symptoms and functional difficulties experienced by mental health consumers. The new survey is a complete revision of the original Behavior and Symptom Identification Scale (BASIS-32), a 32-item questionnaire that was developed at McLean during the 1980s and is now used by approximately 500 psychiatric and behavioral health facilities around the world.

The BASIS-24 survey was developed over a three and a half-year period, with funding from the National Institute of Mental Health. The new survey is grounded in scientific methods of instrument development and validation using psychometrics techniques.

The new BASIS-24 survey cuts across diagnoses, recognizing the wide range of symptoms and problems that occur across the diagnostic spectrum. The survey is also designed to measure outcome for a broad range of treatments and services, encompassing many theoretical orientations. Research for the BASIS-24 resulted in several improvements over the BASIS-32, including fewer and more simplified questions; decreased reading level; decreased redundancy of items; improved reliability and validity in measuring psychosis and substance abuse; improved multicultural sensitivity of items; and validation among heterogeneous groups of mental health and substance abuse service recipients.

McLean Hospital, consistently ranked the nation's top psychiatric hospital by U.S. News & World Report, is the largest psychiatric affiliate of Harvard Medical School, an affiliate of Massachusetts General Hospital and a member of Partners HealthCare. For more information about BASIS-24, visit

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