Self-neglect: development and evaluation of a self-neglect (SN-37) measurement instrument

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Day, Mary Rose
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University College Cork
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Aim: To develop and evaluate the psychometric properties of an instrument for the measurement of self-neglect (SN).Conceptual Framework: An elder self-neglect (ESN) conceptual framework guided the literature review and scale development. The framework has two key dimensions physical/psycho-social and environmental and seven sub dimensions which are representative of the factors that can contribute to intentional and unintentional SN. Methods: A descriptive cross-sectional design was adopted to achieve the research aim. The study was conducted in two phases. Phase 1 involved the development of the questionnaire content and structure. Phase 2 focused on establishing the psychometric properties of the instrument. Content validity was established by a panel of 8 experts and piloted with 9 health and social care professionals. The instrument was subsequently posted with a stamped addressed envelope to 566 health and social care professionals who met specific eligibility criteria across the four HSE areas. A total of 341 questionnaires were returned, a response rate of 60% and 305 (50%) completed responses were included in exploratory factor analysis (EFA). Item and factor analyses were performed to elicit the instruments underlying factor structure and establish preliminary construct validity. Findings: Item and factor analyses resulted in a logically coherent, 37 items, five factor solution, explaining 55.6% of the cumulative variance. The factors were labelled: ‘Environment’, ‘Social Networks’, ‘Emotional and Behavioural Liability’, ‘Health Avoidance’ and ‘Self-Determinism’. The factor loadings were >0.40 for all items on each of the five subscales. Preliminary construct validity was supported by findings. Conclusion: The main outcome of this research is a 37 item Self-Neglect (SN-37) measurement instrument that was developed by EFA and underpinned by an ESN conceptual framework. Preliminary psychometric evaluation of the instrument is promising. Future work should be directed at establishing the construct and criterion related validity of the instrument.
Instrument , Older people , knowledge , Self-neglect
Day, M. R. 2014. Self-neglect: development and evaluation of a self-neglect (SN-37) measurement instrument. DNP Thesis, University College Cork.