iMTA Valuation of Informal Care Questionnaire

About

Many people provide support to a family member or friend in need of care. Lending this informal care may have a considerable impact on their life, in negative and positive ways. The overall effect on informal carers depends on the balance between these effects. Because the effects may be substantial and influence the ability of carers to persevere in their caregiving, it is pertinent that evaluations in health care take account of the impact of illness on the significant others of patients, in particular informal carers.

Researchers interested in measuring the impact of informal care and including informal care in economic evaluations of health care interventions can use the CarerQol, part of the iMTA Valuation of Informal Care Questionnaire (iVICQ).

Background

The Care-related Quality of Life instrument (CarerQol) was designed to measure and value the impact of providing informal care on carergivers. It combines a subjective burden measure that provides a comprehensive description of the caregiving situation (CarerQol-7D) with a valuation of informal care in terms of well-being (CarerQol-VAS). Utility tariffs to calculate a weighted sum score of the CarerQol-7D are also available (see under ‘Valuation sets’).

The instrument can be applied to measure and value the subjective burden of providing informal care, or be included in the ‘effect-side’ of multi-criteria or costs-consequence analyses of interventions aimed at patients or elderly. The CarerQol can also be used in cost-utility analyses of interventions aimed at informal carers.

The CarerQol is currently available in Dutch, English, German, Hungarian, Italian, Japanese, Norwegian, Slovenian, Spanish, Swedish, Polish and Portuguese. German, Norwegian, Swedish, Italian, Spanish and Portuguese translations of the CarerQol are made available by ACTIFcare, a European dementia research project. When using the German, Norwegian, Swedish, Italian, Spanish and Portuguese translations of the CarerQol, please acknowledge ACTIFcare.

The CarerQol is part of the iMTA Valuation of Informal Care (iVICQ) questionnaire.

iMTA Valuation of Informal Care Questionnaire iVICQ

Many people provide support to a family member or friend in need of care. Lending this informal care may have a considerable impact on their life, in negative and positive ways. The overall effect on informal carers depends on the balance between these effects. Because the effects may be substantial and influence the ability of carers to persevere in their caregiving, it is pertinent that evaluations in health care take account of the impact of illness on the significant others of patients, in particular informal carers.

Researchers interested in measuring the impact of informal care and including informal care in economic evaluations of health care interventions can use the iMTA Valuation of Informal Care Questionnaire (iVICQ).

The iVICQ is based on work in this field by Erasmus School of Health Policy & Management (ESHPM) and the institute for Medical Technology Assessment (iMTA), Erasmus University Rotterdam, and discusses how to measure and value:

  • Objective burden of caregiving (e.g., duration and intensity)
  • Subjective burden of caregiving (e.g., perceptions of strain)
  • Health and well-being effects of caregiving

User conditions

The iVICQ manual and questionnaire may be used without prior permission from the authors. A reference to the iVICQ manual in published work is highly appreciated.

The CarerQol is available for use without prior permission from the authors. Its use is the responsibility of the researcher. Please reference the use of this document in any publication:

Brouwer WB, van Exel NJ, van Gorp B, Redekop WK. The CarerQol instrument: a new instrument to measure care-related quality of life of informal caregivers for use in economic evaluations. Qual Life Res. 2006 Aug;15(6):1005-21. [view]

Comments or questions can be directed to carerqol@imta.nl.