The General Health Questionnaire (GHQ) is a screening device for identifying minor psychiatric disorders in the general population and within community or non-psychiatric clinical settings such as primary care or general medical out-patients. Suitable for all ages from adolescent upwards not children, it assesses the respondent’s current state and asks if that differs from his or her usual state. It is therefore sensitive to short-term psychiatric disorders but not to long-standing attributes of the respondent. It can be used help inform further intervention.
The self-administered questionnaire focuses on two major areas:
1. The inability to carry out normal functions
2. The appearance of new and distressing phenomena.
It is available in the following versions:
– GHQ-60: the fully detailed 60-item questionnaire
– GHQ-30: a short form without items relating to physical illness
– GHQ-28: a 28 item scaled version assesses somatic symptoms, anxiety and insomnia, social dysfunction and severe depression
– GHQ-12: a quick, reliable and sensitive short form ideal for research studies.