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02-09-2016 | Brief Communication | Uitgave 1/2017 Open Access

Quality of Life Research 1/2017

Dutch normative data and psychometric properties for the Distress Thermometer for Parents

Quality of Life Research > Uitgave 1/2017
Hedy A. van Oers, Sasja A. Schepers, Martha A. Grootenhuis, Lotte Haverman



The aim of this study was to provide Dutch normative data for the Distress Thermometer for Parents (DT-P) and to assess internal consistency and known-groups validity.


A sample of 1421 parents (60.7 % mothers), representative of the Dutch population, completed online sociodemographic questionnaire and the DT-P, which includes a thermometer (0 (no distress) to 10 (extreme distress), ≥4 clinically elevated distress) and everyday problems across six problem domains (practical, social, emotional, physical, cognitive, and parenting). Internal consistency was calculated using Cronbach’s alphas. Known-groups validity was assessed by comparing parents of a child with a chronic condition (N = 287, 20.2 %) with parents of healthy children, using Mann–Whitney U tests and Chi-square tests.


The DT-P showed acceptable internal consistency (Cronbach’s alphas = .52–.89). Parents of a child with a chronic condition more often reported clinically elevated distress than parents of healthy children (53.0 versus 38.2 %, p < .001). Also, on all domains they reported more problems (p = .000–.022). Normative scores for mothers and fathers separately were provided.


The DT-P distinguishes well between parents of a child with and without a chronic condition. With the current norms available, distress can be evaluated in parents of a child with a chronic condition compared to parents of healthy children in pediatric clinical practice.

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Supplementary material 1 (DOC 102 kb)
Supplementary material 2 (DOC 119 kb)
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