Content validation of a standardized algorithm for ostomy care

Janice Beitz, Mary Gerlach, Pat Ginsburg, Marianne Ho, Eileen McCann, Vickie Schafer, Vera Scott, Bobbie Stallings, Gwen Turnbull

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

17 Scopus citations


The number of ostomy care clinician experts is limited and the majority of ostomy care is provided by non-specialized clinicians or unskilled caregivers and family. The purpose of this study was to obtain content validation data for a new standardized algorithm for ostomy care developed by expert wound ostomy continence nurse (WOCN) clinicians. After face validity was established using overall review and suggestions from WOCN experts, 166 WOCNs self-identified as having expertise in ostomy care were surveyed online for 6 weeks in 2009. Using a cross-sectional, mixed methods study design and a 30-item instrument with a 4-point Likert-type scale, the participants were asked to quantify the degree of validity of the Ostomy Algorithm's decisions and components. Participants' open-ended comments also were thematically analyzed. Using a scale of 1 to 4, the mean score of the entire algorithm was 3.8 (4 = relevant/very relevant). The algorithm's content validity index (CVI) was 0.95 (out of 1.0). Individual component mean scores ranged from 3.59 to 3.91. Individual CVIs ranged from 0.90 to 0.98. Qualitative data analysis revealed themes of difficulty associated with algorithm formatting, especially orientation and use of the Studio Alterazioni Cutanee Stomali (Study on Peristomal Skin Lesions [SACS™ Instrument]) and the inability of algorithms to capture all individual patient attributes affecting ostomy care. Positive themes included content thoroughness and the helpful clinical photos. Suggestions were offered for algorithm improvement. Study results support the strong content validity of the algorithm and research to ascertain its construct validity and effect on care outcomes is warranted.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)22-38
Number of pages17
JournalOstomy Wound Management
Issue number10
StatePublished - Oct 2010
Externally publishedYes

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Internal Medicine
  • Nursing(all)
  • Gastroenterology


  • ostomy
  • ostomy algorithm
  • peristomal complications
  • stomal complications
  • validation study

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