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Author Archives: Kathryn Nicholson

International Multimorbidity Symposium – Friday, November 15th

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We are excited to announce the International Multimorbidity Symposium that will be held on Friday, November 15th at Western University in London, Ontario, Canada.  Attendees will have an opportunity to present and hear about ongoing and future research, as well as collaborate with others to determine the next steps to move international multimorbidity research forward.  We will be welcoming two keynote speakers, Dr. Frances Mair (University of Glasgow) and Dr. Lauren Griffith (McMaster University) and we will be using the “Multimorbidity: a priority for global health research” report from the Academy of Medical Sciences to guide the discussion during the Symposium.
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We welcome any academic researchers, students, policy-makers, health care providers, patients and caregivers who are interested in multimorbidity — importantly to ensure that our discussions represent as many perspectives as possible.  If you have any questions about the content of Symposium, please feel free to contact Kathryn Nicholson, kathryn.nicholson@schulich.uwo.ca.  We look forward to seeing you on November 15th!
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The measurement of multimorbidity

By Kathryn Nicholson
Answering an invitation to contribute with an article to a special issue of the journal Health Psychology, we wrote the article entitled “The measurement of multimorbidity” that was recently published [1]. The article was written with the purpose of providing a review of the literature published between 1974 and 2018 that have utilized measures for multimorbidity and to provide guidance on measures to consider when conducting a research study on multimorbidity. The article introduces the reader to the two main groups of measures of multimorbidity that can be distinguished. The first group of measures is constituted by a simple count from various lists of chronic conditions. The second group of measures introduces weighting for included chronic conditions thus creating a “weighted index” of multimorbidity. These two main groups are not mutually exclusive as the list of medical conditions in some weighted indexes can be used as a list of conditions without weighting. This classification does not include measures of multimorbidity which are not based on lists of medical conditions, such as the Cumulative Illness Rating Scale, which includes areas or domains that are grouped under body systems instead of medical conditions. The article shows the variety of existing measurements, highlighting their differences, to provide an overview of the possibilities that are available to a researcher intending to measure multimorbidity. Finally, the article outlines some guidelines for the choice of a measurement of multimorbidity for research studies. We hope that this review of the existing literature will help inform the careful use of these tools by researchers moving forward. In addition to this review, it is advised that readers attempt to keep updated on the ever-increasing multimorbidity literature.
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1. Nicholson K, Almirall J, Fortin M: The measurement of multimorbidity. Health Psychol 2019. Apr 25. doi: 10.1037/hea0000739. [Epub ahead of print]