TORONTO, Jan. 16, 2012 /CNW/ - A University of Toronto Psychology Professor believes a test to measure a
driver's cognitive ability would go a long way in making Canada's roads
safer. As Canadian clinicians become more aware of disorders that
impact cognitive ability, such as post concussion syndrome, and
dementias, such as Alzheimer's disease, Dr. Konstantine Zakzanis
believes it's becoming increasingly important to measure a driver's
"A practical and accessible screening test to identify those drivers who
may be a risk to themselves and others would help to improve road
safety for all drivers," said Zakzanis. "It could be used at a time of
driver's license renewal, or made available anytime at a driver's
Zakzanis has developed a 15-minute online screening test called
BrainScreen. It is patent pending, available in 20 languages and is the
first test of its kind in North America.
"A whole range of factors affect a driver's cognitive skills, from
medications and concussions to Alzheimer's disease," said Brian
Patterson, President of the Ontario Safety League. "A standard
recognized test to measure a driver's cognitive ability will take road
safety to the next logical level."
Developed by Professor Konstantine Zakzanis through the University of
Toronto and the Hemisphere Centre for Mental Health & Wellness,
BrainScreen is an effective screening tool developed to identify
cognitive disorders that result from Alzheimer's disease and other
Dementia syndromes, as well as psychiatric and medical conditions such
as Attention Deficit Disorder and Post-Concussive Syndrome.
"All too often delayed diagnosis prevents people from getting early
treatment," said Scott Knight, Executive Director of the Hemisphere
Centre for Mental Health and Wellness. "Since BrainScreen is an online
test, giving the user immediate results, it serves as an early warning
system for anyone to get treatment sooner - treatment that could make
all the difference."
BrainScreen is easily adaptable for a range of applications from
driver's license renewals and insurance underwriting and claims to
improving safety in the trucking and cab industries. BrainScreen
provides instant results to the user or any administrator. Similar to
baseline testing in sports endeavours, BrainScreen is able to measure
against past performance.
The Benefits of Cognitive Testing
In 2025, 1 in 4 Canadians will be 65 and older, making a screening test
for cognitive acuity a relevant and practical tool for improving road
Half a million Canadians have Alzheimer's disease or a related dementia.
In other words, 71,000 Canadians under the age of 65, and 1 in 11
Canadians over the age of 65 have Alzheimer's disease. By 2040, that
number is expected to more than double, according to the Alzheimer
Society of Canada.
About Hemisphere Centre
The Hemisphere Centre for Mental Health and Wellness is a collaborative
project designed to promote de-medicalized access to screening tools to
aid in the identification of cognitive disorders secondary to various
disorders and diseases. Combining assessment best practices and
evidence-based research, the Hemisphere Centre is focused on delivering
products and services that are scientifically robust, accessible and
practical for use by the general public. http://hcmh.ca/
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