Pub. date: 2004 | Online Pub. Date: September 15, 2007 | DOI: 10.4135/9781412952576 | Print ISBN: 9780761923602 | Online ISBN: 9781412952576| Publisher:SAGE Publications, Inc.About this encyclopedia
Quality of Life: Measurement
There are two very different types of indicator in terms of which the performance of health care may be assessed. The first type, which may be termed the quantity of life, is concerned with the impact of health care on mortality. The second type of indicator is concerned with the quality rather than duration or survival of lives. An evaluation of contemporary health care that only assessed death rates would provide only a very skewed and limited assessment. However, while the measurement of death and survival may be considered a relatively clear and precise task, quality of life is concerned with experiences that are inherently personal and subjective. Nevertheless, confidence has grown in the last 30 years that quality of life can be measured with sufficient accuracy. Recognition of the importance of quality of life in health care is often traced to the World Health Organization's declaration that health should ...