The goal of the QoL Tool is to provide an easy way for people with bipolar disorder to measure their quality of life online in their daily lives, or as part of routine clinical care. Importantly, the QoL Tool serves as a ‘gateway’ into our Bipolar Wellness Centre.
Background & Methods
CREST.BD conducted a multi-year project to develop a paper-and-pencil version of a scale to measure quality of life specifically in people with bipolar disorder: the Quality of Life in Bipolar Disorder or QoL.BD. They then secured funding from the Canadian Institutes of Health Research to fully realize the potential of the QoL.BD scale to support individualized healthcare, and empower people living with bipolar disorder to manage and improve their health and wellbeing.
Development of the QoL Tool was an iterative, community engaged process. The CREST.BD research team collaborated with IT developers as well as with experts with lived experience of bipolar disorder, ehealth, health informatics, and healthcare provision, using a community-based participatory research approach to the development and testing of the software. Research activities included:
- Community-based research day and focus groups
- Prototype consultations and development
- Prototype testing and evaluation
- Testing and implementation of final QoL Tool
A highlight of the QoL Tool development process was the Quality of Life Community Consultation Day. Through focus groups, dialogue and presentations, the event provided participants with the opportunity to contribute to the development of the QoL Tool. This short video shares the preliminary findings from the event and described how the findings from the day informed next steps.
The QoL Tool development project is now complete and it is available for unrestricted personal use by people with bipolar disorder. We invite people with bipolar disorder to participate in our research to evaluate the QoL Tool and healthcare providers to access our videos on how to utilise the QoL Tool in clinical practice.