Introduction: Non-communicable diseases are a growing global burden, and structured surveys can identify critical gaps to address this epidemic. In sub-Saharan Africa, there are very few well-tested survey instruments measuring population attributes related to non-communicable diseases. To meet this need, we have developed and validated the first instrument evaluating knowledge, attitudes and practices pertaining to chronic kidney disease in a Swahili-speaking population.
Methods and results: Between December 2013 and June 2014, we conducted a four-stage, mixed-methods study among adults from the general population of northern Tanzania. In stage 1, the survey instrument was constructed in English by a group of cross-cultural experts from multiple disciplines and through content analysis of focus group discussions to ensure local significance. Following translation, in stage 2, we piloted the survey through cognitive and structured interviews, and in stage 3, in order to obtain initial evidence of reliability and construct validity, we recruited and then administered the instrument to a random sample of 606 adults. In stage 4, we conducted analyses to establish test-retest reliability and known-groups validity which was informed by thematic analysis of the qualitative data in stages 1 and 2. The final version consisted of 25 items divided into three conceptual domains: knowledge, attitudes and practices. Each item demonstrated excellent test-retest reliability with established content and construct validity.
Conclusions: We have developed a reliable and valid cross-cultural survey instrument designed to measure knowledge, attitudes and practices of chronic kidney disease in a Swahili-speaking population of Northern Tanzania. This instrument may be valuable for addressing gaps in non-communicable diseases care by understanding preferences regarding healthcare, formulating educational initiatives, and directing development of chronic disease management programs that incorporate chronic kidney disease across sub-Saharan Africa.