Quality of Life: scales and measures

How do you rate the experience of people who have dementia? There are lots of ways, from taking 'snapshots' to measuring change over a period of time.

Studies have found that factors such as mood, engagement in pleasant activities, and being able to perform activities of daily living (ADLs) are important, with physical health and cognitive functioning also being important.


The Dementia Statements

The Dementia Statements (sometimes known as the 'we' statements) have been developed by people living with dementia, and carers. They set out things that influence their perceptions of quality of life, in rights-based ways. They can offer a starting point for measurement of people's experience.

Published Quality of Life Scales

Depending on what questions you want to ask, and to whom, you may be able to use a published scale. Some come with their own strict methods for use, such as they must be completed face-to-face with the assistance of an interviewer. Be aware that some scales and methods may require a licence to use.

Examples of questionnaires or instruments to measure the quality of life of people with dementia:

Brod, M. Stewart, A.L., Sands, L., & Walton, P. (1999). Conceptualization and measurement of quality of life in dementia: the dementia quality of life instrument (DQoL). The Gerontologist, 39, 25-35.

Logsdon, R.G., Gibbons, L.E., McCurry, S.M.., & Teri, L. (1999). Quality of life in Alzheimer’s disease: patient and caregiver reports. Journal of Mental Health and Aging, 5, 21-32.

Smith, S.C.., Lamping, D.L., Banerjee, S. et al. (2005). Measurement of health related quality of life for people with dementia: development of a new instrument (DEMQOL) and an evaluation of current methodology. Health Quality in Ageing, 5, 29-39.

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