African American Dementia Caregiver Problem Inventory: Descriptive Analysis and Initial Psychometric Evaluation

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Objectives: The primary objectives of the present study were: (a) to develop the African American Dementia Caregiver Problem Inventory (DCPI-A) that assesses the types and frequency of problems reported by African American dementia caregivers seeking cognitive–behavioral intervention, (b) to evaluate the intercoder reliability of the DCPI-A, and (c) to measure the perceived severity of common problems reported by this caregiver population. Method: The development of the DCPI-A was divided into 3 major steps: (a) creating an initial sample pool of caregiver problems derived from 2 parent randomized clinical trials, (b) formulating a preliminary version of the DCPI-A, and (c) finalizing the development of the DCPI-A that includes 20 problem categories with explicit coding rules, definitions, and illustrative examples. Results: The most commonly reported caregiver problems fell into 5 major categories: (a) communication problems with care recipients, family members, and/or significant others, (b) problems with socialization, recreation, and personal enhancement time; (c) problems with physical health and health maintenance, (d) problems in managing care recipients’ activities of daily living; and (e) problems with care recipients’ difficult behaviors. Intercoder reliability was moderately high for both percent agreement and Cronbach’s kappa. A similar positive pattern of results was obtained for the analysis of coder drift. Conclusions: The descriptive analysis of the types and frequency of problems of African American dementia caregivers coupled with the outcomes of the psychometric evaluation bode well for the adoption of the DCPI-A in clinical settings.

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