Quality of Life (QOL)

Prof. Dr Syed Muhammad Awais (Sitara-e-Imtiaz)

Year:    2011
Category:    Healthcare Quality
Source:   ICQI 2011 – Pakistan`s 12th International Convention on Quality Improvement & 2nd ANQ Regional Conference

Publisher:   PIQC Institute of Quality

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Dean and Chairman Orthopaedic Surgery. King Edward Medical University, Lahore, Pakistan • Member, Pakistan Medical and Dental Council (PMDC). • National Delegate, Editorial Secretary, Member Board of Directors of International Society of Orthopaedics and Traumatology. (SICOT). • Asstt Editor, International Orthopedics, • Editor, Annals of King Edward Medical University • Chairman, Medical and Dental Journals Committee of PMDC • Former Pro Vice Chancellor, King Edward Medical University, Lahore • Former Associate Dean, University of the Punjab. • Past President: Pakistan Orthopaedic Association. (POA) • Past Editor: Journal of Pakistan Orthopaedic Association. (JPOA • Sitara-e-Imtiaz (Star of Distinction) civil award given by President of Pakistan on 14th August 2004. • Committee Member to select recipient of “King Faisal International Award in Medicine” in 2009. • Awarded Honorary Life Membership by Nepal Orthopaedic Association


“Quality of Life (QoL) is a multidimensional concept and has several alternative approaches to define and measure it. Aristotle (384 BC – 322 BC) attributed achievement of “Good Life” to capabilities of individuals, whereas Emanuel Kant (1724 –1804) called for individuals to achieve “Good Society” by acting in the moral ways. QoL is closely linked with the culture of a society which is as a system of collectively held values (Hofstede 1980). History, religion and the level of development in a society influence its culture and consequently QoL.

This paper attempts to address QoL in a society based on the role of three major components i.e.

(1) Religion, (2) Material Facilities, and (3) Psychological Experiences. Moreover, two major factors which determine the QoL are

(1) the capabilities and courage of individuals and (2) the freedom and support provided by the society.

Injustice and oppression experienced by individuals on the whole or on the basis of social class (rich/poor), gender (male/female), age group (minor, adult, old), paternalism, religion and cast have great influences on QoL.

During last few decades, two scientific approaches to measure QoL have emerged, (1) objective measurement of social indicators (material goods and services), and (2) subjective grading of well being (feelings). Despite great efforts, no single method to measure QoL has been developed so far. The most published methods to measure QoL include;

(I) Gross Domestic Product –GDP,

(ii) Gross National Happiness (GNH),

(iii) Multidimensional Poverty Index (MPI),

(iv) Human development index (HDI),

(v) Genuine progress indicator (GPI) or Index of Sustainable Economic Welfare (ISEW),

(vi) Gini coefficient –

(vii) Wealth estimates,

(viii) Private Product Remaining,

(ix) European Quality of Life Survey,

(x) Happy Planet Index.

Important elements of life that are frequently measured are;

(1) Economic Wellness,

(2) Environmental Wellness,

(3) Physical Wellness,

(4) Mental Wellness

(5) Workplace Wellness,

(6) Social Wellness,

(7) Political Wellness.

Based on discussion on QoL, the author will present a small “Reform Agenda” to improve QoL of people of Pakistan.