Measuring / measurements health and health related quality of life
Health related quality of life (HRQoL) covers aspects of well-being, functioning, and symptom experience. In research, we assess HRQoL in multiple ways, for instance through interviews and questionnaires. Patient-reported outcome measures (PROMs) are validated questionnaires that can measure health-related quality of life, functioning, wellbeing, and symptoms from the patients’ perspective. In order to measure the aspects of HRQoL that are relevant for specific patient subgroups, our groups cooperates internationally to develop validated PROMs for these subgroups. Furthermore, we participate in expert groups that find consensus internationally which existing PROMs should be applied for certain patient subgroups. This is important, since measuring data in a uniform way leads to possibilities to merge data internationally – which is another activity we are actively involved in.
A more recent development is the tracking of patients’ health through so-called ‘wearables’. New developments in wearable sensor technology offer new opportunities for ambulatory monitoring of patients. Their ability to detect subtle but relevant changes on a continuous real-time scale, provides better means to objectively assess a patient's health status.
We are currently experimenting with these wearables to investigate how this data can be used next to clinical data from the electronic health record and PROMs data.