Psychometrics of Shared Decision Making and Communication as Patient Centered Measures for Two Language Groups

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Abstract

Shared decision making (SDM) and effective patient−provider communication are key and interrelated elements of patient-centered care that impact health and behavioral health outcomes. Measurement of SDM and communication from the patient’s perspective is necessary in order to ensure that health care systems and individual providers are responsive to patient views. However, there is a void of research addressing the psychometric properties of these measures with diverse patients, including non-English speakers, and in the context of behavioral health encounters. This study evaluated the psychometric properties of 2 patient-centered outcome measures, the Shared Decision-Making Questionnaire−9 (SDM-Q) and the Kim Alliance Scale−Communication subscale (KAS-CM), in a sample of 239 English and Spanish-speaking behavioral health patients. One dominant factor was found for each scale and this structure was used to examine whether there was measurement invariance across the 2 language groups. One SDM-Q item was inconsistent with the configural invariance comparison and was removed. The remaining SDM-Q items exhibited strong invariance, meaning that item loadings and item means were similar across the 2 groups. The KAS-CM items had limited variability, with most respondents indicating high communication levels, and the invariance analysis was done on binary versions of the items. These had metric invariance (loadings the same over groups) but several items violated the strong invariance test. In both groups, the SDM-Q had high internal consistency, whereas the KAS-CM was only adequate. These findings help interpret results for individual patients, taking into account cultural and linguistic differences in how patients perceive SDM and patient-provider communication.

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