PURPOSE: To determine the psychometric properties of a new functional assessment tool, the WeeFIM 0-3 instrument, intended to measure function in young children with physical, cognitive, or developmental impairments from birth to 3 years of age. Specific aims were to determine whether differences exist in WeeFIM 0-3 ratings in children with impairments as compared with those without, controlling for age and gender, and to determine the internal consistency, validity, and hierarchical properties of the instrument.
METHODS: Cross-sectional study of 173 children with impairments and 354 without impairments.
RESULTS: Controlling for age, children without impairments had significantly higher mean WeeFIM 0-3 ratings than children with impairments. There were no differences in mean ratings by gender. The instrument displayed high internal consistency, construct, and predictive validity; maintained a hierarchy of item difficulty; and discriminant properties.
CONCLUSION: Further reliability studies are needed to determine the instrument sensitivity and ability to detect change over time.
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