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The Brief Psychiatric Rating Scale

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The use of the BPRS tool was originally confined to the use of the psychiatrist as he or she evaluated the progress of their patient. In the last couple of decades, however, nurses have been given the responsibility on a more frequent basis to administer the tool for later evaluation by the doctor involved in the case. Barker (2004) discusses how the tool as it is used to monitor “ the experience of psychosis, or the differential effects of treatment” has been more often handed to nurses in recent years with a recognition and stipulation for validity based upon the understanding and clinical skills of the interviewer, in this case the nurse, who must be thoroughly trained in its use (p.

251). Nurses have been using the tool for the past couple of decades through a modified version used for evaluation that can be translated and interpreted across several providers of medical care. The tool evaluates the symptoms so that they can be tracked by the medical team and the immediate position of the mental state of the patient can inform them on how to proceed with treatment.

Through the 24 question instrument that is used by most nurses a more comprehensive set of information can be gathered that allows for greater interpretation by a secondary party to the interview (Tusaie, & Fitzpatrick, 2013). According to Kopelowicz, Ventura, Liberman, and Mintz (2008), the validity of the test to track the progress of patients with schizophrenia is substantial. Through tracking a total of 565 patients over a 15 year period, the study showed that through evaluating four factors the on the 24 part BPRS that successful evaluation was provided by the tool.

The BPRS provided enough evaluation so that interpreting the progress of patients with schizophrenia through the use of the tool was a valid effort. The capacity to track patients through the use of a tool like this through a long period of time provides for the development of an understanding of both the tool’ s validity and the understanding of the psychiatric community about the disorder. \

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