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J Nurs Res. 2007 Sep;15(3):175-82.

Exploration into the variance in self-reported health-related quality of life between the chronically-ill elderly and their family caregivers.

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  • 1Department of Nursing, Songshan Armed Forces General Hospital, and School of Nursing, National Defense Medical Center, Institute of Medical Sciences, Tzu Chi University, Taipei, Taiwan, ROC.


Differences in perspective with regard to Health-Related Quality of Life (HRQOL) may significantly affect long-term care preferences. This study was developed to quantify the direction and magnitude of such differences and to explore factors accounting for HRQOL reporting differences between two groups, namely elderly individuals with chronic conditions and their primary family caregivers. Nurses in seven Taiwanese counties and cities interviewed 267 matched pairs of elderly individuals and primary family caregivers using a 28-item version of the World Health Organization Quality of Life questionnaire (WHOQOL-BREF) adapted for use in Taiwan. Our study used the standardized response mean (SRM)--the ratio of the mean difference to the SD of that difference--to compare scores assigned by the two groups. Family caregivers assigned higher scores in all four HRQOL domains, with scores "moderately higher" in the physical domain and "slightly higher" in the other three. In addition to gender, several activities of daily livings (ADLs) in the physiological, environmental and psychological domains were identified as predictors of HRQOL differences. Marital status and presence of a primary caregiver were the two predictors in the social relationship domain. This study found elderly ADLs, gender, marital status, and the presence of a primary caregiver to be significant predictors of HRQOL differences. Study findings offer guidance to elderly individuals with chronic conditions and their family caregivers with regard to long-term care program arrangement in order to enhance elderly ADLs and family relationships and to achieve a better overall HRQOL for the elderly.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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