Health-related quality of life of people with multimorbidity at a community-based, interprofessional student-assisted clinic: Implications for assessment and intervention
Tyack, Z., Kuys, S., Cornwell, P., Frakes, K-A, McPhail, S
Objective: This study examined the relationship between the number of comorbidities and health-related quality of life (HRQoL) and between select physical conditions and HRQoL. Differences in HRQoL in comparison to a normative sample were also examined. Method A cross-sectional study among people with multimorbidity ( n = 401) attending a community-based, interdisciplinary health clinic was conducted. HRQoL was measured using the eight dimensions of the SF-36. Multiple linear regression and t-tests were used to analyse the data. Results A downward trend in HRQoL continued from 2 to 14 concurrent comorbidities. Patients with a higher number of comorbidities reported greater deficits in HRQoL, when age, gender, education and perceived social support were controlled for (beta = -0.11 to -0.31). The impact of the number of comorbidities was greatest for the bodily pain dimension of the SF-36 (beta = -0.31). Deficits were greatest for people with gastrointestinal conditions and back pain or sciatica. Moderate to large deficits in HRQoL compared to a normative population were found (Cohen's d = 0.54-1.16). Discussion Understanding associations between the number and type of physical comorbidities and HRQoL may assist clinical services to design broad but targeted interventions to optimize HRQoL in this group of people.