Background: Nurses often have difficulty to deal with dementia-related problematic behaviours, resulting in the prolonged hospitalisation of patients, which further waste medical resources and affect care quality, patient safety and nurses’ job satisfaction. It is imperative to improve the dementia care competence of nurses working in acute care. Prior to educational interventions to promote dementia care, using an instrument to evaluate dementia care competence of nurses is needed. Purpose: The purpose of this study was to develop and test the psychometric properties of a scale suitable for the investigation of dementia care competence of nurses working in acute care setting. Methods: The instrumental development design adapted Iceberg Theory as the theoretical foundation was used to develop a scale through three stages: Item development, Content validity and Psychometric testing of the scale. Stratified random sampling was used to enrol subjects from two medical centres in southern Taiwan. The Content Validity Index (CVI), categorical principal components analysis (CATPCA), Cronbach’s α coefficient test and the intra-class correlation coefficient test were used to analyse the data. Results: This study enrolled a total of 308 subjects. The CVI of the entire scale reached.97. Through the CATPCA, resulting 33 items in total with the Knowledge subscale consists of 13 items (range = 0–13), the Attitude subscale consists of 11 items (range = 11–55) and the Skills subscale consists of 9 items (range = 0–9). The final Cronbach’s alpha coefficient for the Knowledge subscale was.88; for the Attitude subscale was.94; and for the Skills subscale was.85. The test–retest reliability after 2 weeks reached.818. Conclusions/Implications for Practice: This scale has good reliability, validity and theoretical support. It can be used to understand the current status and predicaments of dementia care faced by healthcare personnel working in acute care setting, as well as the educational training intervention required to be implemented. Hopefully, nurses’ ability to deal with problematic behaviours of dementia can be improved.
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