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Harvey PD, Raykov T, Twamley EW, Vella L, Heaton RK, Patterson TL. Validating the measurement of real-world functional outcomes: phase I results of the VALERO study. Am J Psychiatry . 2011 Nov 1 ; 168(11):1195-201. PubMed Abstract

Comments on Paper and Primary News
Comment by:  James Gold, SRF Advisor
Submitted 20 July 2011 Posted 20 July 2011

Harvey and colleagues deserve recognition for their recent paper: “Validating the measurement of real world functional outcomes: Phase 1 results of the Valero Study.” Certainly their acronym alone is worthy of commendation, making a large-scale effort of measure validation sound as appealing as a snappy Italian tune popularized by Dean Martin. But more importantly, they took a straightforward and well-powered approach to addressing which functional outcome scale maximally overlaps with a latent trait representing a mixture of cognitive ability/functional capacity. And the analysis appears to have yielded a clear rating scale “winner,” the Specific Levels of Function Scale (with the far less appealing acronym, the "SLOF").

Clearly, replication is needed in other hands, in other types of patient samples before the SLOF enters the hallowed halls of “gold standard” instruments. However, it enters the race for the hallowed halls with a very strong empirical foundation.

Is there any reason to have reservations about these findings? While the SLOF emerged victorious, it...  Read more

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