Reliability, validity and acceptability of the traditional Chinese version of the carer support needs assessment tool in Hong Kong palliative care settings

Hui Lin Cheng, Doris Yin Ping Leung, Po Shan Ko, Ming Wai Chung, Wai Man Lam, Po Tin Lam, Andrew Leung Luk, Simon Ching Lam

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic researchpeer-review

3 Citations (Scopus)


Background: Among the few existing needs assessment tools for family carers, the 14-item Carer Support Needs Assessment Tool (CSNAT) is the only brief and holistic needs screening tool designed for everyday use in palliative care practices. The aim of this study was to evaluate the reliability, validity, and acceptability of the traditional Chinese version of the CSNAT in palliative care settings in Hong Kong. Methods: This adopted a cross-sectional and correlation design with repeated measures. The participants were 125 family carers of palliative cancer patients and 10 healthcare providers (HCPs) that were recruited from two local hospitals. The evaluation of psychometric properties included the following: (1) content validity through HCPs including frontline physicians, nurses, social workers, and clinical psychologists; (2) construct validity between the CSNAT items and those of the validated tools that measured caregiver burden, social support, and caregiving self-efficacy; and (3) one-week test-retest reliability in a sub-sample of 81 caregivers. The acceptability of the tool was assessed by the carers using several closed-ended questions. Results: The content validity index of the CSNAT at the scale level was 0.98. Each item of the CSNAT was significantly and moderately correlated with caregiver burden (Spearman’s r = 0.24 to 0.50) and caregiving self-efficacy (r = − 0.21 to − 0.52), but not for social support. All CSNAT items had fair to moderate test-retest reliability (weighted kappa = 0.21 to 0.48), with the exception of two items “managing your relatives’ symptoms, including giving medicines” and “having time for yourself in the day”. Regarding the acceptability of the CSNAT, almost all HCPs were willing to use the CSNAT for carer assessment and support. 89.6% of the carers demonstrated a comprehensibility of the CSNAT tool and 92.9% felt comfortable answering the questions. Around 90% of the carers agreed to use the tool for screening, discussing needs, and making referrals. Conclusion: The traditional Chinese version of the CSNAT is a tool with high validity and acceptability and adequate reliability that measures family carers’ support needs, which should be considered for wide application in local palliative care practices.

Original languageEnglish
Article number152
JournalBMC Palliative Care
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2021


  • Acceptability
  • Cancer
  • Caregiver
  • Palliative care
  • Reliability
  • Validity

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine(all)


Dive into the research topics of 'Reliability, validity and acceptability of the traditional Chinese version of the carer support needs assessment tool in Hong Kong palliative care settings'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this