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Predictors of the Extent of Agreement for Quality of Life Assessments between Terminally Ill Cancer Patients and Their Primary Family Caregivers in Taiwan

Siew Tzuh Tang
Quality of Life Research
Vol. 15, No. 3 (Apr., 2006), pp. 391-404
Published by: Springer
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/27641101
Page Count: 14
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Predictors of the Extent of Agreement for Quality of Life Assessments between Terminally Ill Cancer Patients and Their Primary Family Caregivers in Taiwan
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Abstract

The use of family caregivers to report patients' dying experiences has been suggested as a way of resolving the problem of non-response bias and missing data in end-of-life research. There is a dearth of information in the literature about the predictors of the extent of agreement for quality of life (QOL) assessments between patients and family informants outside of Western countries. In addition, to date there has been little progress made in deciphering meaningful influencing factors on the levels of agreement between patient and family QOL assessments. The purpose of this study was to identify the impact of the demographics and disease characteristics of patients and families, relationships of the patient to family caregiver, and caregiving burden on the extent of agreement for QOL assessments between Taiwanese terminally ill cancer patients and their family caregivers. Results from assessments by 114 dyads of Taiwanese terminally ill cancer patients and their family caregivers indicated that the extent of agreement between patient and family assessments of patient QOL was negatively influenced by the caregiving burden (amount of care needed and the impact of caregiving on caregiver's health), positively influenced the patient's poorer health status, and there were a mixed effect of the demographics and the relationship between the patient and the family. Providing clinical care tailored at empowering families and aimed at reducing their unmet caregiving needs may improve family caregivers' abilities to assess patient QOL sensitively.

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