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NINDS CDE Notice of Copyright
Functional Independence Measure for Children (WeeFIM)
The FIMTM is proprietary. For further information about obtaining the scale, syllabus, and training materials please contact:
Uniform Data System for Medical Rehabilitation
270 Northpointe Parkway, Suite 300
Amherst, New York 14228 (716) 817-7800 FAX (716) 568-0037
Supplemental: Cerebral Palsy (CP), Chairi I Malformation (CM), Spinal Cord Injury (SCI)-Pediatric (age 0 to 7 years), Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI)
Short Description of Instrument
Purpose: The FIM measures degree of independence in activities of self-care, sphincter control, transfers, locomotion, communication, and cognition.
Overview: The FIM emerged from a thorough developmental process overseen by a National Task Force of Rehabilitation Research. The National Task force reviewed 36 published and unpublished functional assessment scales before agreeing on an instrument. The FIM is an 18-item ordinal scale, used with all diagnoses within a rehabilitation population. It is viewed as most useful for assessment of progress during inpatient rehabilitation.
FIM was originally an acronym for "Functional Independence Measure". It is still often cited as this in the literature. The current owners of the FIM instrument have decided that the acronym FIM no longer stands for anything and should be referred to only as FIM.
The WeeFIM builds on the format of the Functional Independence Measure for Adults of the Uniform Data System for Medical Rehabilitation, tracking disability outcomes in children. Specifically, this assessment measures independence in self- care, sphincter control, transfers, locomotion, communication, and social cognition. The WeeFIM consists of 18 items within the six domains.
Time: Administered through an interview by a trained rater or a telephone interview of caregiver or subject by trained rater. The test takes between 20-30 minutes.
Scoring: A 7-level Likert scale is used to score level of dependence. Scores for the WeeFIM range from 18 (complete dependence in all skills) to 126 (complete independence in all skills).
Rationale: "The motor scale (8 self-care, 5 mobility items) was primarily selected … to assess motor function in the acute recovery phase." - McCauley et al., 2012.
Other Important Notes: The measure is used with children aged 6 months to 7 years. It can be used by children above 7 years if their abilities are below that of 7-year-olds without disabilities.
SCI-Pediatric-specific: The WeeFIM instrument may be used with children above the age of 7 years provided their functional abilities, as measured by the WeeFIM instrument, are below those expected of children aged 7 who do not have disabilities.
To use the FIM and WeeFIM assessors, need to attend training and pass an online exam to become credentialed. Once an assessor has passed the exam, credentialing remains valid for two years, after which time the exam must be sat again. Tthere is a cost to use for research.
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Document last updated June 2020