Cookies on this website

We use cookies to ensure that we give you the best experience on our website. If you click 'Accept all cookies' we'll assume that you are happy to receive all cookies and you won't see this message again. If you click 'Reject all non-essential cookies' only necessary cookies providing core functionality such as security, network management, and accessibility will be enabled. Click 'Find out more' for information on how to change your cookie settings.

PURPOSE: Despite international policies to support the health and wellbeing of informal (family) caregivers, there is no consensus on how to evaluate the effectiveness of carer support. We aimed to develop and validate a new quality-of-life measure for carers (LTCQ-Carer) and to assess its potential for use within a clinical pathway. METHODS: Psychometric properties of LTCQ-Carer were tested through cognitive interviews (qualitative phase) and a pilot survey (quantitative phase). Participants were family caregivers of people recently diagnosed with mild cognitive impairment (MCI) or dementia, recruited through one of 14 memory clinics in south-east England. They self-completed the new measure and comparative existing measures (EQ-5D, ASCOT-Carer). Ongoing feedback from memory clinic staff on potential use of LTCQ-Carer was collected. RESULTS: Interview participants (n = 10) found all draft items of LTCQ-Carer relevant and prompted inclusion of a new item on 'time to yourself'. Responses from survey participants (n = 107) indicated acceptability (low missing data), high internal reliability (Cronbach's α = 0.95), and a general construct (single factor loadings 0.43-0.86 for all items). Observation of predicted associations with EQ-5D and ASCOT-Carer supported construct validity. Responsiveness requires further testing as evidence was inconclusive. Clinical staff feedback on potential use was positive. CONCLUSION: LTCQ-Carer is a valid new measure for assessing family caregivers' quality of life across broad health and social care domains, expanding the range of high-quality tools for evaluating carer support. When used concurrently with patient assessment, it could highlight carer needs and prompt appropriate family support at the earliest point in the clinical pathway.

Original publication




Journal article


Qual Life Res

Publication Date



Carer-reported outcome measure, Dementia, Family caregiver, Informal carer, Mild cognitive impairment (MCI), Quality-of-life scale