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21-05-2020 | Original Article | Uitgave 2/2021

Child Psychiatry & Human Development 2/2021

The Youth Online Diagnostic Assessment (YODA): Validity of a New Tool to Assess Anxiety Disorders in Youth

Child Psychiatry & Human Development > Uitgave 2/2021
Lauren F. McLellan, Maria Kangas, Ronald M. Rapee, Lisa Iverach, Viviana M. Wuthrich, Jennifer L. Hudson, Heidi J. Lyneham
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This study developed an online diagnostic tool for anxiety disorders in youth, and evaluated its reliability and validity amongst 297 children aged 6–16 years (Mage = 9.34, 46% male). Parents completed the online tool, the Youth Online Diagnostic Assessment (YODA), which is scored either using a fully-automated algorithm, or combined with clinician review. In addition, parents and children completed a clinician-administered diagnostic interview and self-report measures of internalizing and externalizing symptoms and wellbeing. The fully-automated YODA demonstrated relatively weak agreement with the diagnostic interview for identifying the presence of any anxiety disorder and specific anxiety disorders, apart from separation anxiety (which had moderate agreement). The clinician-reviewed YODA showed better agreement than fully-automated scoring, particularly for identifying the presence of any anxiety disorder. The YODA demonstrated good agreement with parent-reported measures of symptoms/interference. The YODA offers a fully or largely automated method to determine the presence of anxiety disorders in youth, with particular value in situations where low-resource assessments are needed. While it currently requires further research and improvement, the YODA provides a promising start to the development of such a tool.

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