Health locus of control (HLC) has been used to operationalize general health motivation. This study was undertaken to evaluate the internal consistency and construct validity of Tinsley and Holtgrave's Parent Health Belief Scales (PHBS) as a measure of maternal HLC toward their children's health. Five hundred mothers (71% of eligible consecutive admissions) of newborns admitted to the normal newborn nursery of a large municipal teaching hospital were interviewed 24 to 72 hours after delivery. Principal components factor analysis of the PHBS did not support the originally hypothesized three-dimensional factor structure of the PHBS. In addition, the original subscales did not have adequate internal consistency reliability. Further assessment of construct validity by comparison with maternal preventive health behaviors showed some evidence of construct validity for the scales when compared with breastfeeding behavior. When the three items written as reverse-coded Internality items are not reversed, a reliable seven-item Externality scale emerges which contains items originally thought to represent all three dimensions of HLC.
50, Adult, Aged, analysis, Attitude to Health, Breast Feeding, Child, Child Care: psychology: standards, Child,Preschool, Comparative Study, Comparison, delivery, Factor Analysis,Statistical, Female, Health, Health Behavior, hospital, Hospitals,Teaching, Human, Infant, Infant,Newborn, Internal-External Control, Middle Age, Midwestern United States, Mothers, Mothers: psychology, Motivation, population, Primary Prevention, Prospective Studies, Questionnaires: standards, Reproducibility of Results, ResNet, support, Support,U.S.Gov't,P.H.S., Urban Population