Measuring health-related quality of life (HRQoL) on population level, is becoming increasingly important for priority setting in health policy. In the health economics field, it is common to measure HRQoL in terms of health-state utilities or QoL weights. This study investigates the feasibility of obtaining mean QoL weights by mapping survey data to the generic HRQoL measure EQ-5D and to describe the HRQoL in terms of mean QoL weights in certain disease and socio-economic groups. Data from the 1996-1997 Survey of Living Conditions, interviews with a representative sample (16-84 years) of the Swedish population (n=11 698) were used. The mean QoL weight decreased from 0.91 among the youngest to 0.61 among the oldest, and was lower for women than for men. The QoL weight was 0.88 in the highest socio-economic group and 0.78 in the lowest socio-economic group. The QoL weight was lowest (0.38) among persons with depression and highest among persons with hypertension (0.71). The QoL weight decreased from 0.95 for persons with very good global self-rated health to 0.20 for persons with very poor global self-rated health. The results support the feasibility and validity of the mapping approach. HRQoL varies greatly between socio-economic groups and different disease groups.