A copyright-free alternative to the mini-mental state examination is needed

Re: A copyright-free alternative to the mini-mental state examination is needed

2 January 2013

Experienced clinicians ought to be able to learn the MMSE by heart and should not have to rely on printed copies of the test. If the MMSE is recited from memory it becomes a procedure which cannot be subject to copyright.

It is also worth noting that none of the components of the MMSE are actually original in themselves: questions on orientation to time and place, recall, serial sevens, sentence repetition all appeared in cognitive tests predating the MMSE and the interlocking pentagons are derived from a predating Bender-Gestalt figure.

Competing interests: None declared

Patrick S G Chance, Consultant Psychiatrist

Aneurin Bevan Health Board, St Cadoc's Hospital, Caerleon, Newport NP18 3XQ

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