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Screening Part 2

Screening questionnaires

Screening questionnaires are useful in general practice settings, and may be used by general practice nurses (GPNs) to identify people who might be at risk of a range of conditions. Some screening tests may offer an opportunity to initiate difficult conversations with patients about lifestyle behaviours, or sensitive issues such as mental health. Screening questionnaires may also help to highlight those individuals who need further investigations or referral.

The ideal screening questionnaire should be cost-effective, and quick and easy to complete. It is also important that screening questionnaires are checked for validity and that relevant cut off points have been identified.

This resource, consisting of five assessment questions at intermediate level, tests your knowledge of the use of screening questionnaires in general practice.

Complete this resource, including the further reading and some or all of the suggested activities to obtain a certificate for one hour of continuing professional development to include in your revalidation portfolio. Write up your reflections, considering how the activities reflect the NMC Code, and add to your revalidation portfolio.

Aims and objectives:

On completion of this resource, you should have an understanding of:

  • Some of the screening questionnaires available, such as the screening questionnaires for alcohol use, anxiety and depression, postnatal depression and early dementia
  • The need to counsel people about why we might use a screening questionnaire
  • The actions that might be taken if a screening questionnaire score identifies a possible problem
  • The GPN’s responsibilities when recording the results of a screening questionnaire

Reading list and resources

NICE CG90. Depression in adults; recognition and management , 2009 (updated 2016).

NICE CG192. Antenatal and postnatal mental health: clinical management and service guidance, 2014 (updated 2015).

SIGN 127 (Scottish Intercollegiate Guidelines Network). Management of perinatal mood disorders, 2012.

NICE CG115. Alcohol-use disorders: diagnosis, assessment and management of drinking and alcohol dependence, 2011.

Alzheimer’s Society. Population screening for dementia still not recommended for over 65s, (press release) 2015.