Southwest Cares’ clinicians also offer cognitive assessment or psychological testing.  Diagnostic tests are used when mental illness is suspected and clarification is essential for the diagnosis and treatment plan.  Testing cannot be provided for “screening” purposes for all residents who display adjustment reactions or dysphoria upon moving to a new living situation.  The following are examples of problems that might require psychological and/or neuropsychological testing:

  • Assessment of mental functioning for individuals with suspected or known mental disorders for purposes of differential diagnosis and/or treatment planning.

  • Assessment of patient strengths and disabilities for use in treatment planning or management when signs or symptoms of a mental disorder are present.

  • Assessment of patient capacity for decision-making when impairment is suspected that would affect patient care or management.

  • Differential diagnosis between psychogenic and neurogenic syndromes (e.g., depression versus dementia).

  • Detection of neurologic disease based on quantitative assessment of neurocognitive abilities (e.g., mild head injury, anoxic injuries, Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome (AIDS), dementia).

  • Delineation of the neurocognitive effects of central nervous system disorders.

  • Neurocognitive monitoring of recovery or progression of central nervous system disorders.


Testing may be of value when a psychiatric condition or the presence of dementia has already been diagnosed, but only if the information derived from the testing would be expected to have significant impact on the understanding and treatment of the patient.  All incidents of psychological and neuropsychological testing must be medically necessary, as determined by the patient’s primary care physician, and be done in the pursuit of answering a specific medical question.

119 East Marcy St. Suite 202 Santa Fe, NM 87501 • ph: (505) 982-3113 • fax: (505) 982-2462 • info@southwestcares.com