Open J Psychiatry Allied Sci. 2016;7:41-5. doi: 10.5958/2394-2061.2015.00021.X. Epub2015 Oct 29.

Development of a tool to assess the knowledge of mental illness among the family members of mentally ill.

Ahmed N, Baruah A.


Background: Knowledge of family members or caregivers regarding mental illness plays a vital role in treatment for persons with mental illnesses. There are limited numbers of standardised tool that measure the existing knowledge of family members regarding mental illness. The present study aimed to develop a valid and reliable tool to assess the knowledge of family members regarding mental illness.

Methods: A 46-item questionnaire was structured following the scientific tool development steps. Six domains, namely basic information, need of treatment, medication administration, side-effects and management, consequences of non-adherence, and psychosocial treatment were included in the tool. Content validity of the questionnaire was established by accepting more than 80% validity index for each item. To test the reliability, questionnaire was applied to 100 family members of persons with mental illnesses.

Results: Statistical analyses showed good internal consistency by Chronbach’s alpha (r=0.831) and Spearman Brown-Proficiency formula (r=0.88). Score of all the six individual domains were significantly correlated with the total score of the tool indicating acceptable sensitivity. Significant correlation was found among the score of domains indicating good construct validity of the structured questionnaire.

Conclusion: The constructed questionnaire can be used in research studies of related field by considering its acceptable psychometric properties.


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