eCQM Title

Dementia: Cognitive Assessment

eCQM Identifier (Measure Authoring Tool) 149 eCQM Version number 7.3.000
NQF Number 2872 GUID 7c443b9b-1ad1-4467-b527-defc445701ff
Measurement Period January 1, 20XX through December 31, 20XX
Measure Steward PCPI(R) Foundation (PCPI[R])
Measure Developer American Medical Association (AMA)
Measure Developer PCPI(R) Foundation (PCPI[R])
Endorsed By National Quality Forum
Percentage of patients, regardless of age, with a diagnosis of dementia for whom an assessment of cognition is performed and the results reviewed at least once within a 12-month period
Copyright 2018 PCPI(R) Foundation and American Medical Association. All Rights Reserved.
The Measure is not a clinical guideline, does not establish a standard of medical care, and has not been tested for all potential applications. 

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CPT(R) contained in the Measure specifications is copyright 2004-2017 American Medical Association. LOINC(R) is copyright 2004-2017 Regenstrief Institute, Inc. This material contains SNOMED Clinical Terms(R) (SNOMED CT[R]) copyright 2004-2017 International Health Terminology Standards Development Organisation. ICD-10 is copyright 2017 World Health Organization. All Rights Reserved.

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Measure Scoring Proportion
Measure Type Process
Risk Adjustment
Rate Aggregation
Dementia is often characterized by the gradual onset and continuing cognitive decline in one or more domains including memory, executive function, language, judgment, and spatial abilities. (APA, 2007) Cognitive deterioration represents a major source of morbidity and mortality and poses a significant burden on affected individuals and their caregivers. (NIH, 2010) Although cognitive deterioration follows a different course depending on the type of dementia, significant rates of decline have been reported. For example, one study found that the annual rate of decline for Alzheimer's disease patients was more than four times that of older adults with no cognitive impairment. (Wilson et al., 2010) Nevertheless, measurable cognitive abilities remain throughout the course of dementia. (APA, 2007) Initial and ongoing assessments of cognition are fundamental to the proper management of patients with dementia. These assessments serve as the basis for identifying treatment goals, developing a treatment plan, monitoring the effects of treatment, and modifying treatment as appropriate.
Clinical Recommendation Statement
Ongoing assessment includes periodic monitoring of the development and evolution of cognitive and noncognitive psychiatric symptoms and their response to intervention (Category I). Both cognitive and noncognitive neuropsychiatric and behavioral symptoms of dementia tend to evolve over time, so regular monitoring allows detection of new symptoms and adaptation of treatment strategies to current needs... Cognitive symptoms that almost always require assessment include impairments in memory, executive function, language, judgment, and spatial abilities. It is often helpful to track cognitive status with a structured simple examination. (APA, 2007)

APA recommends that patients with dementia be assessed for the type, frequency, severity, pattern, and timing of symptoms (Category 1C). Quantitative measures provide a structured replicable way to document the patient's baseline symptoms and determine which symptoms (if any) should be the target of intervention based on factors such as frequency of occurrence, magnitude, potential for associated harm to the patient or others, and associated distress to the patient. The exact frequency at which measures are warranted will depend on clinical circumstances. However, use of quantitative measures as treatment proceeds allows more precise tracking of whether nonpharmacological and pharmacological treatments are having their intended effect or whether a shift in the treatment plan is needed. (APA, 2016)

Conduct and document an assessment and monitor changes in cognitive status using a reliable and valid instrument eg, MoCA (Montreal Cognitive Assessment), AD8 (Ascertian Dementia 8) or other tool. Cognitive status should be reassessed periodically to identify sudden changes, as well as to monitor the potential beneficial or harmful effects of environmental changes (including safety, care needs, and abuse and/or neglect), specific medications (both prescription and non-prescription, for appropriate use and contraindications), or other interventions. Proper assessment requires the use of a standardized, objective instrument that is relatively easy to use, reliable (with less variability between different assessors), and valid (results that would be similar to gold-standard evaluations). (California Guidelines for Alzheimer's Disease Management, 2017 and California Workgroup on Guidelines for Alzheimer's Disease Management, 2008)
Improvement Notation
Higher score indicates better quality
American Psychiatric Association (APA). Practice guideline for the treatment of patients with Alzheimer's disease and other dementias. Arlington (VA): American Psychiatric Association (APA); 2007 Oct.
American Psychiatric Association (APA). Practice guideline on the use of antipsychotics to treat agitation or psychosis in patients with dementia. Arlington (VA): American Psychiatric Association (APA); 2016.
California Guidelines for Alzheimer's Disease Management, 2017, rev. 4. California Department of Public Health. Sponsored by the Alzheimer's Association through Senate Bill 613, Chapter 577, 2015.
National Institutes of Health (NIH). NIH State-of-the-Science Conference: Preventing Alzheimer's Disease and Cognitive Decline. April 26-28, 2010. Accessed June 9, 2010.
Wilson RS, Aggarwal NT, Barnes LL, Mendes de Leon CF, Hebert LE, Evans DA. Cognitive decline in incident Alzheimer disease in a community population. Neurology. 2010 Mar 23;74(12):951-5.
Cognition can be assessed by the clinician during the patient's clinical history. 
Cognition can also be assessed by direct examination of the patient using one of a number of instruments, including several originally developed and validated for screening purposes. This can also include, where appropriate, administration to a knowledgeable informant. Examples include, but are not limited to:
-Blessed Orientation-Memory-Concentration Test (BOMC)
-Montreal Cognitive Assessment (MoCA)
-St. Louis University Mental Status Examination (SLUMS)
-Mini-Mental State Examination (MMSE) [Note: The MMSE has not been well validated for non-Alzheimer's dementias]
-Short Informant Questionnaire on Cognitive Decline in the Elderly (IQCODE)
-Ascertain Dementia 8 (AD8) Questionnaire
-Minimum Data Set (MDS) Brief Interview of Mental Status (BIMS) [Note: Validated for use with nursing home patients only]
-Formal neuropsychological evaluation
Use of a standardized tool or instrument to assess cognition other than those listed will meet numerator performance. Standardized tools can be mapped to the concept "Intervention, Performed": "Cognitive Assessment" included in the numerator logic below.

The requirement of two or more visits is to establish that the eligible professional or eligible clinician has an existing relationship with the patient.

The DSM-5 has replaced the term dementia with major neurocognitive disorder and mild neurocognitive disorder. For the purposes of this measure, the terms are equivalent.
Transmission Format
Initial Population
All patients, regardless of age, with a diagnosis of dementia
Equals Initial Population
Denominator Exclusions
Patients for whom an assessment of cognition is performed and the results reviewed at least once within a 12-month period
Numerator Exclusions
Not Applicable
Denominator Exceptions
Documentation of patient reason(s) for not assessing cognition
Supplemental Data Elements
For every patient evaluated by this measure also identify payer, race, ethnicity and sex

Table of Contents

Population Criteria




Data Criteria (QDM Data Elements)

Supplemental Data Elements

Risk Adjustment Variables

Measure Set