The development of a maternal reflective functioning scale for Primary Health Services.

Diamond, Caroline, Caltabiano, Nerina, and Caltabiano, Marie (2014) The development of a maternal reflective functioning scale for Primary Health Services. In: Abstracts from the Australian Association for Infant Mental Health National Conference. From: AAIMHI 2014: Australian Association for Infant Mental Health National Conference, 2-4 October 2014, Brisbane, QLD, Australia. (Unpublished)

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Primary health care providers are able to monitor mother-infant relationships within the context of universal child health checks and targeted home visiting programs (Zeanah & Gleason, 2009). Their key role involves screening and surveillance of developmental problems in young children. This study aimed to develop and conduct preliminary validation of a cost effective, brief self-report scale that is acceptable to mothers of young infants to identify potential difficulties with reflective functioning, a key component in the mother-child attachment relationship. Maternal reflective functioning reportedly has a role in the intergenerational transmission of attachment patterns (Kelly, Slade & Grienenberger, 2005). A development scale was constructed with an over inclusive item set generated from a multidisciplinary, intersectorial expert group and verbatim statements from a representative, community focus group of mothers. 219 mothers of young infants were recruited from primary health centres in regional North Queensland: Mackay, Townsville and Cairns. Basic demographic information was collected about mothers and their infants. Three other scales were administered concurrently to examine convergent and divergent validity: the Parenting Stress Index-4th Edition (Abidin, 2012), the Ages and Stages Questionnaire-3rd Edition (Squires, Twombly, Bricker & Potter, 2009), and the Ages and Stages Questionnaire: Social-Emotional (Squires, Bricker & Twombly, 2003). Exploratory factor analysis supported a three-factor structure (representing Cue Recognition, Mentalisation of Infant and Own Childhood Experience). The new 18-item scale has adequate reliability with Cronbach alphas of .72 to .87. Evidence for convergent and discriminant validity was demonstrated. Preliminary evidence was obtained for a difference in responses for mothers demonstrating depressive symptoms and for self-report of anxiety. Further validation of the new scale that includes different health care and cultural settings is recommended.  

Item ID: 37595
Item Type: Conference Item (Abstract / Summary)
Keywords: scale development, maternal reflective functioning
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Date Deposited: 02 Apr 2015 02:18
FoR Codes: 17 PSYCHOLOGY AND COGNITIVE SCIENCES > 1701 Psychology > 170102 Developmental Psychology and Ageing @ 100%
SEO Codes: 92 HEALTH > 9205 Specific Population Health (excl. Indigenous Health) > 920501 Child Health @ 100%
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