Objective: To determine current practice regarding cognitive assessment during electroconvulsive therapy among ECT treating professionals across New Zealand. Design/Participants: A questionnaire sent to 45 professionals resulted in a response rate of 35.5% from 12 district health boards across New Zealand. Results: Most assess cognitive function at least once during a course of ECT. A third assess at baseline, at least once during and then after the course. Assessments are being conducted by people from various professions. Over two thirds said that a lack of time, resources and sensitive tests were restricting more frequent and thorough cognitive assessments. Conclusion: Respondents recognise that assessing cognitive functioning during a course of ECT is important, though large variations in the nature, frequency and length of the assessments exist. Future research should develop a standardised, sensitive, inexpensive screening measure tailored for use with patients receiving ECT to help overcome the current restrictions to cognitive assessment.
New Zealand Psychological Society Annual Conference: Building bridges: Dialogues across Psychology. Whakatina: Ngā kōrero o te Mātai Hinengaro Programme, 2013, pp. 51 - 51 (1)