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Dementia screening program adopted by primary care group

NJBIZ - 6/29/2018

A screening program for dementia developed by Secaucus-based Quest Diagnostics and the University of California-San Francisco’s Memory and Aging Center will be used by New York-based Primary PartnerCare ACO Independent Practice Association in a pilot project.A screening program for dementia developed by Secaucus-based Quest Diagnostics and the University of California-San Francisco’s Memory and Aging Center will be used by New York-based Primary PartnerCare ACO Independent Practice Association in a pilot project.

The screening program gives primary care doctors a guide to evaluation and care, basic and advanced lab testing services to identify causes of cognitive decline -- including a 10-minute, tablet-based neurobehavioral assessment sensitive to mild cognitive impairment -- and multimedia education materials for patients, caregivers and health care providers. It also includes a protocol to standardize MRI imaging of the brain to ensure accurate screening. Long Island-based Zwanger-PesiriRadiology will provide the MRIs.

Quest and UCSF developed Clinical Pathway to combat primary care doctors’ general failure to diagnose Alzheimer’s Disease at an early stage. The dementia diagnosis and care pathway developed by Quest and UCSF is based on consensus guidelines and the knowledge of experts in dementia care. Several peer-reviewed journals have published on the pathway.

“Delayed and incomplete diagnosis of dementia creates unnecessary costs to the health care system and heartache for families and caregivers,” said Dr. Harry Jacob, chief medical officer at Primary PartnerCare. “Primary care physicians are on the front lines of the dementia crisis as they are often the first to evaluate a patient, but they may lack the tools to reliably screen for cognitive impairment, refer to a specialist, and initiate care.” Copyright 2018 BridgeTower Media. All Rights Reserved.

CREDIT: Vince Calio

 
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