Objectives: The objectives of this research were to: (1) evaluate the reliability and equivalence of the Arabic and English versions of the RAND-36 Health Survey (RAND-36) in a sample of Saudi Arabian citizens; and (2) assess the health status of a sample of Saudi Arabian citizens using both the Arabic and English versions.
Methods: Both the Arabic and English versions of the survey were administered to a convenience sample of bilingual (English and Arabic) Saudi citizens (n = 415) at Saudi ARAMCO Company, Dhahran, Saudi Arabia. Internal consistency, equivalent-forms, and test-retest reliability were estimated for the eight multi-item scales in the Arabic and English versions. Mean scale scores were calculated for each version and compared with the general US populations.
Results: The median Cronbach's alphas for the Arabic RAND-36 in multiple subgroups exceeded 0.70 for every scale except one. Two of the English RAND-36 scales had median Cronbach's alphas that exceeded 0.70; the remainder exceeded 0.50. Two-week test-retest correlations were all statistically significant for both versions. Product-moment correlations to test the equivalence of the corresponding Arabic and English versions of the RAND-36 ranged from 0.73 to 0.92. Saudi citizens reported significantly higher vitality scores, but significantly lower physical functioning, social functioning, and general health perception scores than the general US population.
Conclusions: The results provide support for the reliability and equivalence of the Arabic and English versions of the RAND-36. Additional studies need to be conducted in a representative sample of the general Saudi population to further assess the psychometric properties of the Arabic version.