235868 Recently developed Index of Sojourner Social Support (ISSS): Psychometric performance among, and public health implications for, Spanish-speaking immigrant Latino men who have sex with men (MSM)

Monday, October 31, 2011: 9:06 AM

Paul A. Gilbert, MSPH , Health Behavior and Health Education, University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, NC
Scott Rhodes, PhD, MPH, CHES , Social Sciences and Health Policy, Wake Forest University School of Medicine, Winston-Salem, NC
We assessed the psychometric performance of the 18-item Index of Sojourner Social Support (ISSS), a recently developed instrument that captures socio-emotional and instrumental support for adults living outside their country of origin, within a sample of immigrant Latino men who have sex with men (MSM). These men comprise a marginalized population for whom social support may be especially salient. Data were collected from 190 immigrant Latino MSM (mean age=26) in central North Carolina. Nearly 80% reported being from Mexico originally. We used Mplus v.6 to conduct a confirmatory factor analysis, using weighted least squares estimation to account for the ordinal data and full information maximum likelihood to impute missing values. The two factor model showed an unacceptably high correlation between the latent socio-emotional and instrumental support factors (r>.94). We respecified a single factor model, which showed good fit by two indices (CFI=.976; TLI=.972) but poor fit by the χ2 and weighted root mean square residual statistics (χ2=925.843, df=135; WRMR=2.788). Nine pairs of variables had correlations ≥.99, indicating redundant measures. A single factor model with 12 indicators showed a similar goodness-of-fit pattern (CFI=.970; TLI=.963, χ2=570.265, df=54; WRMR=2.534) with high standardized factor loadings (λs≥.858). These factor loadings suggest that the ISSS is a very good measure of some latent construct, presumed to be social support. The distinction between two types of social support, however, was not supported. Future research should elaborate the most meaningful dimensions of social support among immigrant populations and establish whether associations exist between ISSS scores and health-related behaviors.

Learning Areas:
Diversity and culture
Social and behavioral sciences

Learning Objectives:
1. Describe the constructs of social support and sojourner social support, and their relevance to public health. 2. Evaluate the psychometric properties of the ISSS in a sample of immigrant Latino MSM. 3. Describe modifications to the ISSS that may improve its performance.

Keywords: Latinos, Biostatistics

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I performed the analyses described in the abstract.
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.

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