Quality of life assessments and levels of decision making: differentiating objectives

Qual Life Res. 1993 Aug;2(4):297-303. doi: 10.1007/BF00434801.


The purpose of this paper is to examine uses of quality of life (QOL) measurements at different levels of decision making within the health care system, ranging from the micro (clinical) level, through the meso (agency, institutional or regional) level to the macro and meta (governmental) levels. We use individualized, group and population-based QOL and preference assessments as illustrative examples of ways in which QOL information and decision making level interact. We conclude that the meso and macro levels pose particularly challenging problems, and suggest that, if the primary emphasis is placed on applications of QOL assessments at the micro (clinical) level of decision making, a research agenda that is much too limited may be adopted.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Chronic Disease / psychology*
  • Chronic Disease / rehabilitation
  • Decision Making*
  • Humans
  • Neoplasms / psychology
  • Neoplasms / rehabilitation
  • Quality of Life*
  • Social Environment