Background HIV-associated vulnerabilities—especially those linked to psychological issues—and limited mental health–treatment resources have the potential to adversely affect the health statuses of individuals. The concept of resilience has been introduced in the literature to shift the emphasis from vulnerability to protective factors. Resilience, however, is an evolving construct and is measured in various ways, though rarely among underserved, minority populations. Herein, we present the preliminary psychometric properties of a sample of HIV-seropositive Puerto Rican women, measured using a newly developed health-related resilience scale. Methods and design The Resilience Scales for Children and Adolescents, an instrument with solid test construction properties, acted as a model in the development (in both English and Spanish) of the HRRS, providing the same dimensions and most of the same subscales. The present sample was nested within the Hispanic-Latino longitudinal cohort of women (HLLC), that is part of the NeuroAIDS Research Program at the University of Puerto Rico (UPR), Medical Sciences Campus (MSC). Forty-five consecutively recruited, HIV+ women from the HLLC completed a demographic survey, the HRRS, and the Beck Depression Inventory-I, Spanish version. Results The results demonstrate excellent overall internal consistency for the total HRRS score (α = 0.95). Each of the dimensional scores also evidenced acceptable internal consistency (α ≥ 0.88). All the dimensional and subscale content validity indices were above the 0.42 cut-off. Analysis revealed a significant negative correlation between the HRRS total score and BDI-I-S (r(45) = -0.453, p < 0.003). Conclusion Albeit preliminary in nature, the present study provides support for the HRRS as a measure to assess resilience among individuals living with chronic medical conditions. Minority populations, especially non-English speaking ones, are understudied across the field of medicine, and when efforts are made to include these patient groups, measurement is rarely tailored to their unique cultural and linguistic experiences. The HRRS is a measure that addresses these notable voids in the medical literature.
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