Current literature indicates that the significance of the impact of serious childhood illness on family dynamics has been recognized by health care providers. Subsequently, there has been increasing emphasis on the prevention of secondary psychosocial problems, as well as on the need for holistic care. This paper reports a validity and reliability study conducted on an assessment tool being developed for use by clinicians to evaluate the psychosocial status of families having children with serious illnesses. It has potential for use as both a clinical and a research instrument. Clinical uses for the scale, in addition to the methods utilized to establish validity and reliability, are discussed.
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