Measuring Willingness to Foster Children With Disabilities and Special Medical Conditions

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In this article, the authors present the Willingness to Foster Scale - Disabilities and Medical Conditions (WFS-DMC) and report results concerning its psychometric properties. The WFS-DMC is a new measure designed to accurately and efficiently assess the willingness of parents to foster children with special needs, in particular, disabilities and special medical conditions. The authors tested the WFS-DMC with a national sample of 298 foster mothers. Internal consistency reliability was excellent (α =. 90). With reference to construct validity, mothers with higher WFS-DMC scores fostered longer, fostered and adopted more children, and requested the removal of a smaller proportion of foster children. Furthermore, the mothers' WFS-DMC scores were unrelated to demographic characteristics. The WFS-DMC could help guide the decision-making process involved in matching children who have special needs with parents willing to care for them.