Health-Related Quality of Life for Children: A Concept Analysis

Wednesday, 24 July 2013: 3:50 PM

Sandra Lee Sinclair, RN, PhD
School of Nursing, University of Hawaii at Manoa, Honolulu, HI

Learning Objective 1: The learner will be able to state the operational definition for health-related qulity of life as it relates to children.

Learning Objective 2: The learner will be able to identify at least four attributes for health-related quality of life as it relates to children.


Historically, nurses throughout the world have strived to assist children to achieve the best possible health-related quality of life (HRQOL). Published concept analyses on quality of life (QOL) and HRQOL have primarily addressed the adult population. Due to the unique developmental and cognitive phases children experience, it is necessary to develop the concept as it relates to children which can then be utilized to construct an operational definition to apply to research inquiry and enhance an understanding of HRQOL as it relates to children.


 The evolutionary approach to concept analysis was utilized as described by Rodgers (2000). The evolutionary method included the following components: identifying the concept of interest; identifying the setting and sample for data collection; collecting data to identify the attributes, antecedents, and consequences; analyzing data regarding characteristics of the concept; and identifying implications, hypotheses, and implications for further development of the concept.


The concept analysis resulted in clarifying the concept of HRQOL for children in the toddler, preschool, and school-aged phases of development. Following a synthesis of the literature, an operational definition of HRQOL was constructed. HRQOL for a child is defined as the child’s individual perception of the impact that their medical condition, disease state, or congenital anomaly has on their physical well-being, psychosocial well-being, and satisfaction with life in relation to their cognitive and developmental level.



Nurses have a unique and significant role in caring for children to promote an optimal HRQOL. A concept analysis on HRQOL for children has resulted in a clear, succinct definition of the concept that can accurately reflect its use in the literature and can be utilized in clinical practice, research, theory construction, or instrument development to advance the science of nursing.