Attention Point Launches DefiniPoint, Nation's First Online ADHD Assessment System

The nation's first suite of online assessment tools for the evaluation of Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) in children launched to members of the Virginia Psychological Association today. The suite of tools, called DefiniPoint, offers a convenient and reliable alternative to paper based rating scales, which can be cumbersome and time-consuming for patients, families and clinicians.

DefiniPoint uses patented Bayesian algorithms developed at the University of Virginia to combine results from multiple rating scales and multiple informants, such as parents and teachers, into a single, more precise probability score for ADHD. Because DefiniPoint is internet based, the test can be customized for each child using accepted rating scales, sent to appropriate individuals for input, then returned online for analysis. The result is a single, dependable score achieved quickly and conveniently.

Sam English, Ph.D., founder and CEO of Attention Point, says the current method of relying on paper-based ratings scales is difficult, unreliable, and often leads to missing information, leaving clinicians with an incomplete picture of the child's ADHD symptoms.

"DefiniPoint simplifies this process, making it easier to distribute, collect and interpret multiple rating scales," he says. "Ultimately, this gives the clinician better and more useful information for accurate diagnosis and treatment."

Kim Penberthy, Ph. D., co-inventor and associate professor in the U. Va. Department of Psychiatry and Neurobehavioral Sciences, says that input from multiple caregivers is crucial for an accurate ADHD assessment.

"Children exhibit different behaviors in different environments, making it crucial for the clinician to gather information from as many informants as possible," says Penberthy. "Unfortunately, the current methods of data gathering using paper-based tools are difficult, time consuming and ultimately not as effective. Often the information never makes its way back to the clinician."

Penberthy says U. Va. researchers found that combining scores from multiple rating scales using Bayesian algorithms provides more precise results, with a smaller "gray zone" of incomplete or conflicting data than individual rating scales .

Studies have also shown that ADHD classification accuracy is increased by integrating information from multiple informants and that the return rate of rating scales from informants can be dramatically improved through the use of an Internet assessment portal .

"Essentially, the more input clinicians have regarding a child's behavior at school, at home, and elsewhere, the better equipped they are to diagnose and develop appropriate treatment plans," she adds.

To launch the product, members of the Virginia Psychological Association are being given the opportunity to utilize the system for free for three months. During this period, AttentionPoint will gather data and feedback about benefits, use and effectiveness and plans to launch the product nationwide in 2013.

About ADHD

ADHD is one of the most common childhood psychiatric disorders. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) in the United States, parents report that approximately 9.5 percent or 5.4 million children ages 4 to 17, have been diagnosed with ADHD. The CDC also reports rates of ADHD diagnosis have increased an average of 5.5 percent per year from 2003-2007, the most recent timeframe noted.

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About Attention Point

Attention Point is an emerging health information technology company dedicated to improving the diagnosis of neurobehavioral health disorders. The company develops and provides web-based assessment tools to help clinicians provide faster, more accurate diagnoses for their behavioral health patients.
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