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Technology and health care for the elderly medical research studies

Focus on strategic priorities that have significant social impact.

CAT 2013-51

Integrating quality of life assessments into acute care for older adults with chronic life-limiting illness

This Quality of Life Assessment and Practice Support System (QPSS) will consist of carefully selected questions that nurses can use to obtain patients' and family caregivers' perspectives about their quality of life (QOL) concerns and care needs. It will also inform the practice of health care professionals by providing appropriate suggestions about how to manage the QOL concerns identified during the assessment.

Research Results

Publications, presentations and webinars

For information on why this research matters, click the links below:

Policy        Family        Researchers

About the Project

Older adults who have advancing chronic and life-limiting illnesses present significant challenges for health care delivery in hospital-based settings. They often have complex problems that affect their ability to function and their overall QOL. Routine assessment of their perceived health care needs and their QOL make patients' and family caregivers' concerns more visible to health care professionals, so that they can be effectively monitored and addressed. These types of assessments involve asking people about their symptoms, their physical, psychological, social and existential/spiritual wellbeing and their experiences with health care.

This project involves the design and implementation of an electronic (tablet-based) practice support tool for clinicians in hospital-based care settings to assess health-related concerns relevant to the QOL of older people with chronic life-limiting illnesses, and that of their family caregivers. The QPSS will be developed and tested in collaboration with health care professionals, patients and family caregivers. 

Project Team

Principal Investigators:

Richard Sawatzky, PhD, MSc, BSc, RN -- Trinity Western University

Robin Cohen, PhD, MSc, BSc -- Jewish General Hospital

Kelli Stajduhar, PhD, MSN, BN, RN -- University of Victoria


Kristofer Årestedt, PhD -- Ersta Sköndal University College

Joan Bottorff, PhD -- University of British Columbia

Stirling Bryan, PhD -- University of British Columbia

Peter Dodek, MD, MHSc -- Providence Health Care

Anne Gadermann, PhD -- Providence Health Care

Daren Heyland, MD, MSc, BSc -- Kingston General Hospital

Naomi Kogan, MSW -- Jewish General Hospital

Sandra Lauck, PhD -- Providence Health Care

Joakim Öhlén, PhD -- Ersta Sköndal University College

Sheryl Reimer Kirkham, PhD -- Trinity Western University

Kara Schick-Makaroff, PhD, RN -- University of Alberta

Henry Stelfox, BMSc, MD, PhD -- University of Calgary

Herbert Tsang, PhD -- Trinity Western University

Knowledge Users and Partners:

Sharon Baxter, Executive Director -- Canadian Hospice Palliative Care Association

Stuart Brown -- Abbotsford Regional Hospital

Shelly Cory, MA -- Canadian Virtual Hospice

Kathleen Cuthbertson -- B.C. Ministry of Health

Joanne Friesen -- Abbotsford Regional Hospital

Ella Garland, RN, MN, CHPCN(C) -- Providence Health Care Research Institute (B.C.)

Neil Hilliard, MD, MCFP(PC) -- Fraser Health Authority

Christie Kay -- Abbotsford Regional Hospital

Janis McGladrey, MA, BScN, RN, CHE -- Providence Health Care Research Institute (B.C.)

Barbara McLeod, MSN -- Fraser Health Authority

Stephen Mitchinson, MD -- Abbotsford Regional Hospital

Amanjit Poonian -- Abbotsford Regional Hospital

Della Roberts, RN, MSN, CHPCN(C) -- Fraser Health Authority

Simin Tabrizi -- Providence Health Care Research Institute (B.C.)

Carolyn Tayler, RN, MSA, CON(C) -- Fraser Health Authority

André Tourigny, MD, MBA -- Institut national de santé publique

Becky Williams -- Abbotsford Regional Hospital

Daphne Williscroft, RN -- Fraser Health Authority

Project Contact: Richard Sawatzky --

CAT 2013-51

Key words: quality of life; patient-reported outcomes; patient-centred care; life-limiting illness; older adults