Include issues that affect quality of life and day-to-day living, where appropriate

quality of lifeAn illness or condition does not only affect the health of an individual. It can impact their emotional wellbeing, their work or education, their hobbies, their relationships with friends and family, their ability to take care of themselves and others on a day to day basis, their living environment.

The DISCERN criteria specify that information should describe how treatment choices (including the options of delaying or forgoing treatment) may affect overall quality of life – including day-to-day activities and relationships with family, friends and carers.

Why is this important?

Participants reported having used 'personal experiences' information to: recognise decisions that needed consideration; identify options; appraise options and make selections (including by developing and reflecting on their reasoning about possible choices); and support coping strategies. Their inclination to use 'personal experiences' information was apparently moderated by assessments of personal relevance, the motives of information providers and the 'balance' of experiences presented.

Entwistle VA, France EF, Wyke S, Jepson R, Hunt K, Ziebland S, Thompson A., How information about other people’s personal experiences can help with healthcare decision-making: a qualitative study. (2011.) 85(3):e291-8. doi: 10.1016/j.pec.2011.05.014. Epub 2011 Jun 8.. Patient Education and Counseling.
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Resources to support you

  • The DISCERN Instrument

    DISCERN can be used by authors and publishers of information as a guide to the standard which users are entitled to expect. It includes criteria for being clear on the evidence-base, communicating uncertainty, and sharing the date a piece of health information was created. It also covers signposting to further sources of information and support, issues that affect quality of life.

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How have others done this?

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