© 2008

Care-Related Quality of Life in Old Age

Concepts, Models and Empirical Findings

  • Marja Vaarama
  • Richard Pieper
  • Andrew Sixsmith

Table of contents

  1. Front Matter
    Pages i-xiv
  2. Research Framework

    1. Marja Vaarama, Richard Pieper, Andrew Sixsmith
      Pages 3-18
    2. Marja Vaarama, Richard Pieper, Andrew Sixsmith, Ene-Margit Tiit, Seija Muurinen, Kai Saks et al.
      Pages 19-44
    3. Ene-Margit Tiit, Kai Saks, Marja Vaarama
      Pages 45-61
  3. Theoretical Results

    1. Marja Vaarama, Richard Pieper
      Pages 65-101
    2. Marja Vaarama, Richard Pieper, Mona Frommelt, Seija Muurinen, Andrew Sixsmith, Margaret Hammond et al.
      Pages 102-124
    3. Richard Pieper, Mona Frommelt, Claus Heislbetz, Marja Vaarama
      Pages 125-150
  4. Empirical Results

    1. Marja Vaarama, Ene-Margit Tiit
      Pages 168-195
    2. Kai Saks, Ene-Margit Tiit, Seija Muurinen, Susanna Mukkila, Mona Frommelt, Margaret Hammond
      Pages 196-216
    3. Andrew Sixsmith, Margaret Hammond, Grant Gibson
      Pages 217-233
    4. Claus Heislbetz, Petteri Hertto, Marja Vaarama
      Pages 234-254
    5. Richard Pieper, Claus Heislbetz, Gunnar Ljunggren
      Pages 255-280
    6. Marja Vaarama, Gunnar Ljunggren, Richard Pieper, Thomas Emilsson
      Pages 281-298
  5. Summary

    1. Marja Vaarama, Richard Pieper, Gunnar Ljunggren, Seija Muurinen, Kai Saks, Andrew Sixsmith
      Pages 301-326
  6. Back Matter
    Pages 327-338

About this book


It’s a core issue at the heart of elder care: while best-practice data exist for long-term care, quality of life as a concept, measure and standard for care outcomes remains elusive. The result of an ambitious European research initiative, the Care Keys Project addresses quality of life issues among frail, care-dependent seniors, taking their social as well as health needs into account. Care-Related Quality of Life in Old Age explains the theory behind Care Keys, its methodology, empirical findings, and practical considerations in promoting effective, efficient elder care aimed at social and emotional well-being and including disabled and cognitively impaired patients. This important book:

  • Brings together gerontological knowledge from medical, psychology, nursing, sociology, economics, and health care systems perspectives.
  • Introduces an integrated theory of care-related quality of life that emphasizes social, emotional and mental aspects as well as physical longevity.
  • Presents a practice oriented framework for quality management of long-term care toward improving elders’ quality of life.
  • Examines quality of life in home and long-term care settings across the five European member countries of Care Keys.
  • Describes the Care Keys Toolkit, featuring innovative measures for monitoring and evaluating care and troubleshooting for problem areas.

For those charged with improvements at any level of this vital area—administrative, policy, research, professional, or student—this volume will bring new insights and stimulation for potential answers on the complex challenges of elder health care.


Elderly and health care Life models Old age age dementia efficiency geriatrics gerontology health care patients quality quality of life

Editors and affiliations

  • Marja Vaarama
    • 1
  • Richard Pieper
    • 2
  • Andrew Sixsmith
    • 3
  1. 1.Department of Social WorkUniversity of LaplandFinland
  2. 2.University of BambergGermany
  3. 3.Department of GerontologySimon Fraser University at Harbour CentreVancouverCanada

About the editors

Marja Vaarama is Professor of Social Work and Social Gerontology at the University of Lapland, Finland. Her areas of research include quality of life in old age, quality and performance of long-term care for older people, gerontological social work, information technology for planning, evaluation and management of long term care for older people. She is the co-ordinator of the EU-funded Care Keys research project.

Richard Pieper is Professor of Urban Studies and Social Planning at the University of Bamberg, Germany. His main fields of research are in theory of social and regional integration and collective identity, and aging and technology, elderly care planning, and social and health care systems.

Andrew Sixsmith is Lecturer in Social Gerontology in the Department of Primary Care at the University of Liverpool. His current research interests focus on new technologies to facilitate the delivery of community health and welfare services.

Bibliographic information

Industry Sectors
Health & Hospitals
Public Health


From the reviews:

"This book presents the findings of the Care Keys project, research that focused on quality of life in old age, especially persons who are vulnerable, frail, or disabled, carried out in Finland, Estonia, Sweden, and the U.K. … Professionals specializing in geriatrics and having a background in research process and tools will be most interested in this book. … The extensive reference lists at the end of each section are a valuable part of the book." (Sharon G. Thomas, Doody’s Review Services, February 2008)