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Revista médica de Chile

versión impresa ISSN 0034-9887


CARES L., Víctor et al. Cognitive and legal aspects in older people. Rev. méd. Chile [online]. 2020, vol.148, n.8, pp.1183-1188. ISSN 0034-9887.

In Chile, 7.1% of people aged over 60 years have some type of cognitive disorder. The frequency of the latter increases to 13% in people between 75-79 years and 36.2% in people over 85 years. The concept of mild cognitive impairment (MCI) and dementia have evolved over time. The 5th edition of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-5) uses the term minor and major neurocognitive disorder, replacing the DCL and dementia respectively. Major cognitive disorder impairs functional performance while minor disorders does not. There is an arbitrary discrimination against the elderly. A form of discrimination is the request made by some notaries of a medical certification of the cognitive function for older people willing to carry out a legal procedure. This request has the sole effect of pre-establishing evidence in favor of the notary and not protecting the testator or the vulnerable person. Assessing the ability of older people to care for themselves and their possessions has important implications for them and their families, since there is a serious risk of prejudice when someone is declared as disabled. Thus, considering the epidemiology of cognitive disorders in our country we propose a series of legal and medical discussion points aimed to protect autonomy and to protect individuals and their possessions when they have difficulties to control their decisions.

Palabras clave : Ageism; Civil Rights; Dementia; Neurocognitive Disorders; Neuropsychological Tests.

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