This is a summary, written by members of the CITF Secretariat, of:

Seth R, Madathil SA, Siqueira WL, McNally M, Quiñonez CR, Glogauer M, Allison PJ. Validity and reliability of the COVID-19 Anxiety Syndrome Scale in Canadian dentists. Clin Psychol Psychother. 2023 Jun 20. doi:

The results and/or conclusions contained in the research do not necessarily reflect the views of all CITF members.

A CITF-funded study, published in Clinical Psychology and Psychotherapy, found that the COVID-19 Anxiety Syndrome scale (C-19ASS) is a valid and reliable instrument to measure COVID-19-related anxiety among Canadian dentists, whether used in English or French. This study was led by Dr. Paul Allison (McGill University) in collaboration with Dr. Sreenath Madathil (McGill University) and Dr. Walter Siqueira (University of Saskatchewan).

The COVID-19 Anxiety Syndrome scale (C-19ASS) is a self-report questionnaire developed to assess the presence of anxiety syndrome and maladaptive forms of coping with COVID-19 (avoidance, threat monitoring, and worry) among adults. Another instrument called the Generalized Anxiety Disorder-7 (GAD-7) is more commonly used as a self-report questionnaire to screen for, diagnose, and assess the severity of Generalized Anxiety Disorder (GAD). This disorder is characterized by worrying excessively and uncontrollably about daily life’s events and activities. This study aimed to evaluate the validity of the C-19ASS in English and in French among Canadian dentists.

Key findings:

  • To determine if two tests that are believed to measure anxiety strongly correlate, the C-19ASS scores were compared to the GAD-7 ones. Indeed, an individual with a high C-19ASS also scored high on the GAD-7. While the C-19ASS evaluates COVID-19-related anxiety specifically, the GAD-7 evaluates generalized anxiety.
  • The French version of the C-19ASS was demonstrated to have good validity among French-speaking dentists.
  • The C-19ASS was demonstrated to have acceptable levels of reliabilityThe extent to which the instrument yields the same results over multiple trials in a population of Canadian dentists.

The availability of validated measures like the C-19ASS in both English and French can aid in understanding and addressing the mental health impact of the pandemic on dentists. This knowledge can inform interventions and support systems to enhance mental health and well-being in the face of future challenges like viral pandemics.

This study used data from a prospective cohort study aiming to estimate COVID-19 incidence rates among licensed dentists in Canada from August 2020 to October 2021. A total of 644 dentists were recruited and the C-19ASS was added to the follow-up questionnaire in November 2020 and repeated monthly until the end of the study in October 2021.