The WOMB (WOMen's views of Birth) antenatal satisfaction questionnaire: development, dimensions, internal reliability, and validity
Author: Smith, Lindsay F. P.
Source: British Journal of General Practice, 1 December 1999, vol. 49, no. 449, pp. 971-975(5)
Abstract:Background. Antenatal services continue to change, stimulated by the Changing Childbirth report. Women's views should be an important component of assessing the quality of such services. To date, no published quantitative multidimensional assessment instrument has been available to measure their satisfaction with care.
Aim. To develop a valid, reliable, multidimensional questionnaire to assess quality of antenatal care.
Method. A multidimensional satisfaction questionnaire was developed using psychometric methods. Following fieldwork to pilot a questionnaire, three successive versions of it were given by midwives to pregnant women in their final trimester in nine trusts in the old South Western region of England. Their replies were analysed by principal components analysis (PCA) with varimax rotation; internal reliability was assessed by Cronbach's alpha. Face, content, and construct validity were all assessed during development.
Results. Out of 196 women, 134 (68.4%) returned the pilot questionnaires. One hundred and seventy-two (57.3%) out of 300 women returned version 1 of the WOMB (WOMen's views of Birth) antenatal satisfaction questionnaire proper, 283 (56.6%) out of 500 returned version 2, and 328 (65.6%) out of 500 returned the final development version. This final version consisted of 11 dimensions in addition to a general satisfaction one. These were [Cronbach's alpha]: five related to antenatal clinic characteristics (travelling to clinic [0.75], waiting at clinic [0.90], clinic environment [0.69], timing of appointment [0.78], car parking [0.85]), three 'professional' characteristics (professional competence [0.80], knowing carers [0.79], information provided [0.81]), antenatal classes [0.76], social support from other pregnant women [0.83], checking for the baby's heart beat [0.63]. There were significant moderate correlations (range = 0.24 to 0.77) between individual dimensions and the general satisfaction dimension. Women's dimension scores were significantly related to age, parity, social class, and best educational achievement.
Conclusion. This multidimensional satisfaction instrument has good face, content, and construct validity, and excellent internal reliability. It could be used to generally assess antenatal services or to screen them to detect areas where further in-depth qualitative enquiry is merited. Its sensitivity to change over time, external reliability, and transferability to non-Caucasian groups needs to be assessed.
Document Type: Research Article
Publication date: December 1, 1999