Annali dell'Istituto Superiore di Sanità
Print version ISSN 0021-2571
GIGANTESCO, Antonella and GIULIANI, Massimo. Quality of life in mental health services with a focus on psychiatric rehabilitation practice. Ann. Ist. Super. Sanità [online]. 2011, vol.47, n.4, pp.363-372. ISSN 0021-2571. http://dx.doi.org/10.4415/ANN_11_04_07.
Only recently the interest in the quality of life (QoL) has gained prominence in mental health practice with respect to other medical disciplines, such as oncology or cardiology, perhaps because the QoL measures were considered as tautological and largely overlapping with measures of psychopathology. Moreover, most of the recognized components of QoL represent the main areas of psychiatric intervention. For example, psychological functioning impairment represents the main area of psychotherapeutic and psychopharmacological interventions, social functioning impairment the main area of rehabilitation intervention. In addition, measures of QoL in psychiatric patients may be biased by some aspects of the disease, including impaired evaluation capacity or decreased expectations. Nowadays, QoL issues in relation to mental health care are especially relevant with regard to part of evaluation of treatment outcomes. Suggestions for the choice of the most appropriate QoL instruments for research and routine evaluation in mental health care are given.
Keywords : quality of life; health services; mental health services; psychiatric rehabilitation.