Quality of Life Research

, Volume 24, Issue 5, pp 1281–1293

Validation of the Care-Related Quality of Life Instrument in different study settings: findings from The Older Persons and Informal Caregivers Survey Minimum DataSet (TOPICS-MDS)

  • J. E. Lutomski
  • N. J. A. van Exel
  • G. I. J. M. Kempen
  • E. P. Moll van Charante
  • W. P. J. den Elzen
  • A. P. D. Jansen
  • P. F. M. Krabbe
  • B. Steunenberg
  • E. W. Steyerberg
  • M. G. M. Olde Rikkert
  • R. J. F. Melis
Article

Abstract

Purpose

Validity is a contextual aspect of a scale which may differ across sample populations and study protocols. The objective of our study was to validate the Care-Related Quality of Life Instrument (CarerQol) across two different study design features, sampling framework (general population vs. different care settings) and survey mode (interview vs. written questionnaire).

Methods

Data were extracted from The Older Persons and Informal Caregivers Minimum DataSet (TOPICS-MDS, www.topics-mds.eu), a pooled public-access data set with information on >3,000 informal caregivers throughout the Netherlands. Meta-correlations and linear mixed models between the CarerQol’s seven dimensions (CarerQol-7D) and caregiver’s level of happiness (CarerQol-VAS) and self-rated burden (SRB) were performed.

Results

The CarerQol-7D dimensions were correlated to the CarerQol-VAS and SRB in the pooled data set and the subgroups. The strength of correlations between CarerQol-7D dimensions and SRB was weaker among caregivers who were interviewed versus those who completed a written questionnaire. The directionality of associations between the CarerQol-VAS, SRB and the CarerQol-7D dimensions in the multivariate model supported the construct validity of the CarerQol in the pooled population. Significant interaction terms were observed in several dimensions of the CarerQol-7D across sampling frame and survey mode, suggesting meaningful differences in reporting levels.

Conclusions

Although good scientific practice emphasises the importance of re-evaluating instrument properties in individual research studies, our findings support the validity and applicability of the CarerQol instrument in a variety of settings. Due to minor differential reporting, pooling CarerQol data collected using mixed administration modes should be interpreted with caution; for TOPICS-MDS, meta-analytic techniques may be warranted.

Keywords

CarerQol-7D Caregivers Quality of life Geriatric health services Visual analogue scale 

Supplementary material

11136_2014_841_MOESM1_ESM.docx (32 kb)
Supplementary material 1 (DOCX 32 kb)

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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing Switzerland 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  • J. E. Lutomski
    • 1
    • 2
  • N. J. A. van Exel
    • 3
  • G. I. J. M. Kempen
    • 4
  • E. P. Moll van Charante
    • 5
  • W. P. J. den Elzen
    • 6
  • A. P. D. Jansen
    • 7
  • P. F. M. Krabbe
    • 8
  • B. Steunenberg
    • 9
  • E. W. Steyerberg
    • 10
  • M. G. M. Olde Rikkert
    • 1
  • R. J. F. Melis
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Geriatric MedicineRadboud University Medical CenterNijmegenThe Netherlands
  2. 2.Anu Research CentreUniversity College CorkCorkIreland
  3. 3.Institute of Health Policy and ManagementErasmus UniversityRotterdamNetherlands
  4. 4.Department of Health Services Research, CAPHRI School for Public Health and Primary CareMaastricht UniversityMaastrichtNetherlands
  5. 5.Department of Internal Medicine and GeriatricsAcademic Medical CenterAmsterdamNetherlands
  6. 6.Department of Public Health and Primary CareLeiden University Medical CenterLeidenNetherlands
  7. 7.Department of General Practice and Elderly Care Medicine/EMGO + Institute for Health and Care ResearchVU University Medical CenterAmsterdamNetherlands
  8. 8.Department of Epidemiology, University Medical Centre GroningenUniversity of GroningenGroningenNetherlands
  9. 9.Julius Center for Health Sciences and Primary CareUMC UtrechtUtrechtNetherlands
  10. 10.Department of Public HealthErasmus MC University Medical CenterRotterdamNetherlands

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