Table of Contents
ISRN Family Medicine
Volume 2014, Article ID 919613, 9 pages
Research Article

Qualitative Exploration of the Suitability of Capability Based Instruments to Measure Quality of Life in Family Carers of People with Dementia

1Centre for Health Economics and Medicines Evaluation, Bangor University, Ardudwy Hall, Bangor LL57 2PZ, UK
2Faculty of Health Sciences, University of Southampton, Highfield, Southampton SO17 1BJ, UK

Received 3 December 2013; Accepted 21 January 2014; Published 4 March 2014

Academic Editors: S. Byford, D. Goodridge, A. O’Brien, and V. K. Sharma

Copyright © 2014 Carys Jones et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Background. In an ageing population, many individuals find themselves becoming a carer for an elderly relative. This qualitative study explores aspects of quality of life affected by caring for a person with dementia, with the aim of identifying whether capability based questionnaires are suitable for measuring carer quality of life. Methods. Semistructured interviews lasting up to an hour were conducted, November 2010–July 2011, with eight family carers of people with dementia. Interviews typically took place at the participants’ homes and were recorded and transcribed verbatim. Framework analysis was used to code and analyse data. Domains from three capability based questionnaires (ICECAP-O, Carer Experience Scale, and ASCOT) were used as initial codes. Similar codes were grouped into categories, and broader themes were developed from these categories. Results. Four themes were identified: social network and relationships; interactions with agencies; recognition of role; and time for oneself. Conclusions. By identifying what affects carers’ quality of life, an appropriate choice can be made when selecting instruments for future carer research. The themes identified had a high degree of overlap with the capability instruments, suggesting that the capabilities approach would be suitable for future research involving carers of people with dementia.