Initial Psychometric Evaluation of the Staff Perception of the Disruptive Patient Behavior Scale

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The aim of this study is to develop and psychometrically test the Staff Perception of Disruptive Patient Behavior (SPDPB) Scale.


Disruptive patient behaviors impact work safety for nurses in hospitals. There is no standardized approach to capturing staff perceptions of these behaviors.


A mixed-methods approach was used to develop and psychometrically evaluate the SPDPB Scale. Items were generated from a survey completed by 770 healthcare providers. A prototype 66-item instrument was developed and content validity was obtained. Evaluation of the psychometric properties of the SPDPB Scale was completed with 558 nurses. Evaluation included internal consistency reliability, principal components analysis, and internal consistency reliability derived subscales to refine the final scale.


The SPDPB Scale is a multidimensional measure of perceptions of disruptive patient behaviors. The analysis identified 6 components explaining 54.1% of the variance. The final scale contained 65 items.


This scale demonstrated psychometric adequacy and can be recommended to measure staff perceptions of disruptive patient behavior.

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