Background. Severe negative emotional reactions to chronic illness are maladaptive to patients and they need to be addressed in a primary care setting. Objective. The psychometric properties of a quick screening tool-the Negative Emotions due to Chronic Illness Screening Test (NECIS)-for general emotional problems among patients with chronic illness being treated in a primary care setting was investigated. Method. Three studies including 375 of patients with chronic illness were used to assess and analyze internal consistency, test-retest reliability, criterion-related validity, a cut-off point for distinguishing maladaptive emotions and clinical application validity of NECIS. Self-report questionnaires were used. Results. Internal consistency (Cronbach's a) ranged from 0.78 to 0.82, and the test-retest reliability was 0.71 (P < 0.001). Criterion-related validity was 0.51 (P < 0.001). Based on the 'severe maladaptation' and 'moderate maladaptation' groups defined by using the 'Worsening due to Chronic Illness' index as the analysis reference, the receiver-operating characteristic curve analysis revealed an area under the curve of 0.81 and 0.82 (ps < 0.001), and a cut-off point of 19/20 was the most satisfactory for distinguishing those with overly negative emotions, with a sensitivity and specificity of 83.3 and 69.0%, and 68.5 and 83.0%, respectively. The clinical application validity analysis revealed that low NECIS group showed significantly better adaptation to chronic illness on the scales of subjective health, general satisfaction with life, self-efficacy of self-care for disease, illness perception and stressors in everyday life. Conclusion. The NECIS has satisfactory psychometric properties for use in the primary care setting.
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