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Ciencia y enfermería

versión On-line ISSN 0717-9553


SCHWARTZMANN, LAURA. HEALTH-RELATED QUALITY OF LIFE: CONCEPTUAL ASPECTS. Cienc. enferm. [online]. 2003, vol.9, n.2, pp.09-21. ISSN 0717-9553.

The article reviews the importance of the concept of health-related quality of life (HRQL) as outcome in health evaluation. Traditional measures of morbidity, mortality and life expectancy are no longer sufficient to determine differences. The need of taking into consideration patients’ perceptions, preferences and motivations in decision-making and health evaluation is emphasized Conceptual issues on the HRQL construct are reviewed, its strengths and limitations. Historical development of the concept coming from three basic traditions: psychological ( study of happiness), sociological (social indicators) and medical sciences (health status profiles) is revised. The HRQL concept is recognized as individual, age-dependent but also culturally and historically dependent one. Finally the conceptual framework we adhere to at the Medical Psychology Department of the School of medicine (University of the Republic of Uruguay) is developed as well as a proposal for empirical testing allowing scientifically-based psychosocial interventions.

Palabras clave : Health-related quality of life; conceptual issues; health evaluation; health outcomes; quality of care.

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