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Use of the Brief Cognitive Rating Scale with Dementia Clients

Michelle Hediger, M.S., OTR/L

May 15, 2012



Is the Brief Cognitive Rating Scale (BCRS) typically completed only at the initial evaluation or can it be completed at various times during the course of your treatment with an individual?


I highly recommend that the Brief Cognitive Rating Scale be completed more than once especially when you are working with individuals with dementia in either Stage 2 or Stage 3, which have the more mild cognitive impairments.  You might want to reevaluate patients at this level after cognitive retraining to see if any improvements have been made.  

This also could be a great tool in the case of medications or a transient illness causing cognitive impairments.  Using the BCRS could help to rule out things such as urinary tract infections, "chemo brain" or other transient illnesses versus dementia.  

michelle hediger

Michelle Hediger, M.S., OTR/L

Michelle is an Occupational Therapist who currently is responsible for clinical program development and special projects for a large contract rehab provider. Prior to this role, she has held regional operations positions providing management oversight for post-acute rehab and assisted living settings. She has nearly 15 years experience as an Occupational Therapist across a variety of settings including skilled nursing, assisted and independent living, mental health and school based therapy. Her clinical areas of expertise include management and leadership, long term care programming and wellness program design and implementation. She spent four years as an Assistant Professor and Academic Fieldwork Coordinator at Suffolk County Community College, New York. She is an experienced program developer who has produced and presented training courses for healthcare professionals with a variety of backgrounds, including therapists, nurses, social work and long term care administrators. Her expertise in Geriatric management and education has led her to expand rehab teams and build innovative therapy programs across the geriatric care continuum.

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