BACKGROUND: Community care professionals need to encourage older adults in performing functional activities to maintain independence. However, professionals often perform functional activities on behalf of older adults. To change this, insights into the behavior and barriers of professionals in encouraging activities are required. In the current study, the MAINtAIN questionnaire, which was developed for nursing homes, was adopted. The objective was to create a modified version that is suitable for measuring behavior and barriers of community care professionals in encouraging functional activities of clients in the community care setting. The overall aims were to assess the content validity, construct validity, and internal consistency of the modified version.
METHODS: Data was collected by qualitative and quantitative methods in two phases. During phase one, the MAINtAIN was assessed on appropriateness and feasibility by community nurses (N = 7), and the adapted questionnaire was assessed on content validity by research experts (N = 9) and community care professionals (N = 18). During phase two, the psychometric properties of the adapted MAINtAIN-C were assessed in community care professionals (N = 80). Construct validity was evaluated by an Exploratory Factor Analysis (EFA), and internal consistency was determined by calculating Cronbach's alpha coefficients.
RESULTS: The formulation, verbs, and wording of the MAINtAIN were adapted; some items were excluded and relevant items were added, resulting in the MAINtAIN-C with two scales, showing good content validity. The Behaviors scale (20 items) measures perceived behavior in encouraging functional activities, expressing good internal consistency (Cronbach's alpha: .92). The Barriers scale measures barriers in encouraging functional activities related to two dimensions: 1) the clients' context (7 items), with good internal consistency (.78); and 2) the professional, social, and organizational contexts (21 items), showing good internal consistency (.83).
CONCLUSIONS: The MAINtAIN-C seems promising to assess the behavior and barriers of community care professionals in encouraging functional activities. It can be used to display a possible difference between perceived and actual behavior, to develop strategies for removing barriers in encouraging activities to foster behavioral change. The results also provide guidance for further research in a larger sample to obtain more insight into the psychometric properties.