Development of a list of essential electrocardiogram knowledge for anaesthesiologists
Background: It is vital for anaesthetists to be able to record and interpret the electrocardiogram (ECG) correctly. It is important to establish and adhere to professionally developed and validated evidence-based guidelines for ECG interpretation. Content validation is a process that aims to address whether the items on a developed list are content valid or not. The aim of this study was to develop a list of the essential ECG knowledge for anaesthesiologists. Methods and results: A prospective, exploratory and instrumental study design using Lynn's two-stage model of determination and quantification of content validity was followed in this study. The Development Stage initially involved a review of the literature by the researcher and was then followed by a peer group discussion with local anaesthesiologists who were Part II examiners for the Fellowship of the College of Anaesthetists of South Africa (FCA(SA)). Every item was debated until consensus was reached. This stage resulted in a list with 93 items. This list was then sent to a national panel of anaesthesiologists, who were also Part II examiners for the FCA(SA), for validation in the Judgement-Quantification Stage. A four-point Likert scale ranging from unnecessary to essential information was used to grade each item. Only items deemed important or essential by the panel were retained. This resulted in 87 of the 93 items being considered content valid. This entire list was quantified using the content validity index (CVI). Lynn suggests that for a list to be considered content valid, it should have a CVI of 0.8. The CVI of this list is 0.9. Therefore, this list is content valid. Conclusion: A list of essential ECG knowledge for anaesthesiologists has been developed by using a thorough scientific process to ensure content validity.
A research report submitted to the Faculty of Health Sciences, University of the Witwatersrand, Johannesburg in partial fulfilment of the requirements for the degree of Master of Medicine (in Anaesthesiology)