There is a lack of valid and reliable generic measures of Health-Related Quality of Life (HRQoL) for children under eight. The purpose of this paper is to assess the…
There is a lack of valid and reliable generic measures of Health-Related Quality of Life (HRQoL) for children under eight. The purpose of this paper is to assess the psychometric properties of the newly formulated Quality of Life Scale for Children (QoL-C), which uses a pictorial response format.
In total, 335 primary school children completed the QoL-C on two occasions, two weeks apart. Children aged four to seven were interviewed one-to-one while children aged eight to nine completed the measure as a class activity. Test-re-test reliability, convergent validity and child-parent concordance were assessed.
Only one child refused to complete the QoL-C, which suggests the measure is user-friendly. Test-re-test reliability was moderate for the measure's total score (intraclass correlation coefficient =0.48, 95 percent CI 0.39, 0.57) but low to fair for individual items (K from 0.13 to 0.37). Internal consistency was moderate (α=0.42 time one, 0.53 time two). A small significant correlation was found between the QoL-C and Child Health Meter in the expected direction (r=−0.32), suggesting convergent validity. There was low concordance between the children's QoL-C responses and parent's responses (r=0.19) to a parallel measure.
The results suggest that further development of this measure is needed. However, the findings indicate that one-to-one support increases the reliability of very young children's responses. The use of pictures, emoticons and minimal text used in the QoL-C should be investigated further.
Low parent-child concordance underscores the importance of younger children getting the opportunity to share their views about their HRQoL.