Quality of life

The term ‘quality of life’ is defined as people’s own perception of their physical, psychological and social functioning. Scores for children are calculated using the so-called 'Child Health Questionnaire Parent Form 28' or 'CHQ-PF28' in short, often abbreviated as CHQ. This questionnaire is a frequently used international standard for children which was developed in the United States by Jeanne Landgraf et al. (Landgraf et al., 1999). The CHQ consists of 28 multiple choice questions. The Dutch language version of these 28 questions is presented to parents or caretakers of children aged 4 to 11 as part of the Statistics Netherlands National Health Survey. The questions are related to multiple dimensions of health. Based on the CHQ, a generalised measurement of the physical quality of life and of the psycho-social quality of life can be compiled. These generalised measurements are a weighted combination of the responses to all 28 underlying questions. In the calculation, weights developed by Landgraf e.a. (1999), which came from an extensive sample among American children aged 4 to 11,  were used. The average value is 50 exactly. Values under 50 indicate a lesser quality of life compared to the standard population and values over 50 indicate a better quality of life. For the entire Dutch child population, the average value for both types of quality is higher than 50. This means quality of life on average for the Netherlands is slightly higher than for the American standard population. This does not have any effect on the comparison of average values between groups of children or between these children and the total average of Dutch children, however.
Source: Landgraf J.K., Abetz L., Ware J.E. The CHQ User's Manual. Second
Printing. Boston, MA: Healthact, 1999.
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