Measuring Person-centered Care: A Critical Comparative Review of Published Tools

Gerontologist. 2010 Dec;50(6):834-46. doi: 10.1093/geront/gnq047. Epub 2010 Jun 21.


Purpose of the study: to present a critical comparative review of published tools measuring the person-centeredness of care for older people and people with dementia.

Design and methods: included tools were identified by searches of PubMed, Cinahl, the Bradford Dementia Group database, and authors' files. The terms "Person-centered," "Patient-centered" and "individualized" (US and UK spelling), were paired with "Alzheimer's disease," "older people," and "dementia" in various combinations. The tools were compared in terms of conceptual influences, perspectives studied and intended use, applicability, psychometric properties, and credibility.

Results: twelve tools eligible for review were identified. Eight tools were developed for evaluating long-term aged care, three for hospital-based care, and one for home care. One tool, Dementia Care Mapping, was dementia specific. A common limitation of the tools reviewed is that they are yet to be used and validated beyond the development period; thus, their validity, reliability, and applicability needs further exploration. Also, the perspective of people with dementia remains absent.

Implications: the review demonstrates the availability of a multitude of tools for measurement of person-centered care in different settings and from different perspectives, even if further testing of the tools is needed. The conceptual underpinnings of the tools are rarely explicit, which makes it difficult to ascertain the conceptual comparability of the tools.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Biomedical Research
  • Dementia / therapy*
  • Home Care Services
  • Hospitalization
  • Humans
  • Patient Care / standards*
  • Patient-Centered Care / standards*
  • Psychiatric Status Rating Scales
  • Psychometrics / instrumentation
  • Reproducibility of Results
  • Surveys and Questionnaires / standards*