198438 Development and validation of instruments to assess the role of spirituality in cancer coping among African Americans

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Cheryl L. Holt, PhD , Department of Behavioral and Community Health; School of Public Health, University of Maryland, College Park, MD
Lee Caplan, PhD , Department of Community Health and Preventive Medicine, Morehouse School of Medicine, Atlanta, GA
Victor Blake, MD, MTS , Morehouse Medical Associates, Morehouse School of Medicine, Atlanta, GA
Emily Schulz, PhD , Occupational Therapy, A.T. Still University, Mesa, AZ
Penny Southward, MPPM , Media For Health, Birmingham, AL
The literature suggests that many individuals when diagnosed with cancer rely on spirituality, among other coping mechanisms, to help deal with the disease. This relationship may be even more pronounced among African Americans. In attempting to determine HOW African Americans use spirituality to cope with cancer, we developed four instruments based on a set of qualitative interviews with survivors. Central themes that emerged were explored further for instrument development. These themes were aligned with a four-dimensional model of spirituality that involves meaningful connections to others, the self, God, and the world. Instruments were developed and piloted using an iterative process. The connections to others instrument included 10 items that involved the role of family, friends, and one's Pastor/Minister (α=.77). The connections to self instrument included seven items that involved getting to know one's self better as a result of the cancer experience (α=.52). The connections to God instrument included eight items that involved the role of one's relationship with God in coping with cancer (α=.80). The connections to world instrument included seven items that involved helping others, particularly others with cancer, and giving back to society as a method of coping with cancer (α-=.79). Validity findings and factor analyses from a sample of 100 African Americans with cancer will be discussed. These instruments can be used in research to learn more about cancer coping among African Americans, and in practice to inform cancer support and survivorship interventions.

Learning Objectives:
1. Discuss how qualitative methods can be used in instrument development. 2. Describe the psychometric properties of several instruments developed to assess the role of spirituality in cancer coping among African Americans. 3. Describe the role that spirituality plays in coping with cancer, among African Americans.

Keywords: Cancer, Religion

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I am the Principal Investigator of the project.
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.