Assessment of the Equivalence of the Spanish and English Versions of the CAHPS Hospital Survey on the Quality of Inpatient Care

Published in: Health Services Research, v. 40, no. 6, pt. 2, Dec. 2005, p. 2140-2161

Posted on RAND.org on January 01, 2005

by Margarita Patricia Hurtado, January Angeles, Steven A. Blahut, Ron D. Hays

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OBJECTIVE: To describe translation and cultural adaptation procedures, and examine the degree of equivalence between the Spanish and English versions of the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality's (AHRQ) Consumer Assessments of Healthcare Providers and Systems (CAHPS) Hospital Survey (H-CAHPS) of patient experiences with care. DATA SOURCES: Cognitive interviews on survey comprehension with 12 Spanish-speaking and 31 English-speaking subjects. Psychometric analyses of 586 responses to the Spanish version and 19,134 responses to the English version of the H-CAHPS survey tested in Arizona, Maryland, and New York in 2003. STUDY DESIGN: A forward/backward translation procedure followed by committee review and cognitive testing was used to ensure a translation that was both culturally and linguistically appropriate. Responses to the two language versions were compared to evaluate equivalence and assess the reliability and validity of both versions. DATA COLLECTION/EXTRACTION METHODS: Comparative analyses were carried out on the 32 items of the shortened survey version, focusing on 16 items that comprise seven composites representing different aspects of hospital care quality (communication with nurses, communication with doctors, communication about medicines, nursing services, discharge information, pain control, and physical environment); three items that rate the quality of the nursing staff, physician staff, and the hospital overall; one item on intention to recommend the hospital. The other 12 items used in the analyses addressed mainly respondent characteristics. Analyses included item descriptives, correlations, internal consistency reliability of composites, factor analysis, and regression analysis to examine construct validity. PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: Responses to both language versions exhibit similar patterns with respect to item-scale correlations, factor structure, content validity, and the association between each of the seven qualities of care composites with both the hospital rating and intention to recommend the hospital. Internal consistency reliability was slightly, yet significantly lower for the Spanish-language respondents for five of the seven composites, but overall the composites were generally equivalent across language versions. CONCLUSIONS: The results provide preliminary evidence of the equivalence between the Spanish and English versions of H-CAHPS. The translated Spanish version can be used to assess hospital quality of care for Spanish speakers, and compare results across these two language groups.

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