Recovering Quality of Life (ReQoL) Policy Research Unit in Economic Evaluation of Health and Care interventions is funded by the Department of Health Policy Research Programme. It is a collaboration between researchers from the University of Sheffield and the University of York. The Department of Health's Policy Research Unit in Economic Evaluation of Health and Care Interventions is a programme of work that started in January 2011. The unit is led by Professor John Brazier (Director, University of Sheffield) and Professor Mark Sculpher (Deputy Director, University of York) with the aim of assisting policy makers in the Department of Health to improve the allocation of resources in health and social care. This is an independent report commissioned and funded by the Policy Research Programme in the Department of Health. The research was also part-funded by the National Institute for Health Research Collaboration for Leadership in Applied Health Research and Care Yorkshire and Humber (NIHR CLAHRC YH).

August 2016 - the ReQoL license is now available, please visit the ReQoL website for more details. 

ReQoL is a new Patient Reported Outcome Measure (PROM) specifically developed to assess quality of life for people with mental health conditions. ReQoL will assess the recovery of the service user in order to evaluate and improve mental health services from the patient’s perspective.
Collaboration has been central to the development of ReQoL. There are 4 governance groups in addition to the core team, which have brought together expertise from a wide range of mental-health related institutions and groups to shape the development of the PROM. These groups include academic and clinical researchers and mental health practitioners based in the UK, international  researchers, expert service users, and policymakers from the Department of Health and NHS England.

This collaborative working has ensured that ReQoL is relevant and useful to patients and practitioners, as well as producing data in order to evaluate services and aid future decision making. It has also facilitated study recruitment (over 6500 services users were recruited to test the measure from across England, from 21 NHS trusts, 6 GP practices and a number of voluntary sector organisations), and will aid the implementation process.

The project has been majority-funded by the Department of Health through EEPRU (Policy Research Unit in Economic Evaluation of Health and Care Interventions). The Chief Investigator (CI) for the ReQoL project is Professor John Brazier, who is the lead for the HEOM theme, and another member of ReQoL core team, Tom Ricketts, who is leading the implementation work, is part of the CLAHRC YH Mental Health and Comorbidities theme.

HEOM has contributed funding towards the HEOM006 ReQoL BME validation project, has funded the lead researcher for the HEOM008 ReQoL adolescent validation project through RCF, and is now funding a researcher for the on-going research into implementation work. 

NIHR CLAHRC Introduction to ReQol

ReQoL is a new Patient Reported Outcome Measure (PROM) that has been developed to assess the quality of life for people with different mental health conditions. A PROM is a questionnaire that patients complete about their health. 

Questionnaires like this are important as they are used in helping to decide what support or services people receive and to measure and improve the quality of care that service users receive.  ReQoL was  developed by a Scientific Group led from The University of Sheffield and funded by the Department of Health Policy Research Programme in England for use in the NHS.                                                                                 

There are two versions of the ReQoL measures. ReQoL-10 contains 10 mental health items and ReQoL-20 contains 20 mental health items. Both versions contain one physical health question. The measures are suitable for use with service users aged 16 and over. They are suitable for use across all mental health populations including common mental health problems, severe and complex and psychotic disorders (clusters 1-17) (not dementia or learning disabilities).  

Why was ReQoL needed?
It has been recognised that a self-complete generic measure is needed to assess the outcome of mental health services that is not limited by diagnosis, but suitable for anyone who is or may at some point use mental health services. The most common measure for this purpose in England is EQ-5D, but it has been shown not to be appropriate in many areas of mental health (Brazier et al., 2014).  A generic measure needs: to be short; to be applicable to all the clusters and; to encompass the main domains for measuring recovery outcomes in mental health as reported by Boardman et al. (2013). There is no measure that is suitable for this purpose, necessitating the development of a new generic measure in the area of mental health.    

Strengths of ReQoL:

Why use ReQoL? 

  • Consistent with the themes of recovery
  • Constructed using considerable inputs from service users and clinicians
  • Acceptable to service users and clinicians
  • Short and simple to use
  • Suitable for a range of mental health conditions from common mental health disorders to more severe ones

ReQoL has been developed using a robust methodology and is psychometrically sound 
Preference weights will be available for the ReQoL to generate quality adjusted life years.    

Free for the NHS and for publicly funded research.  Further information is available here from the ReQoL website

Cultural adapatbility of outcome measures: the content validity of ReQoL for a BME population

Anju Keetharuth I

This project looked at whether ReQoL is applicable to the BME population in Bradford (Bradford District Care NHS Foundation Trust).  It supported by Dr Suzanne Heywood-Everett at the Bradford District Care Trust.
Exploring the face validity of ReQoL items with 16-18 year olds - Adolescent ReQoL

Contact: Lizzie Taylor Buck I

The report of the government's Children and Young People’s Mental Health Taskforce recommends potentially extending CAMHS (Child and Adolescent Mental Health Services) to young people up to 25 years of age (DH, 2015b). 

Extended CAMHS services will require outcome measures suitable for the 16-25 year old population that are able to reliably measure change in older adolescents and younger adults. It was important to explore the use of ReQoL (a new PROM for mental health assessment) with this age group in further detail.

ReQoL Implementation

Contact: Lizzie Taylor Buck I
ReQoL (Recovering Quality of Life) is a new short generic patient reported outcome measure (PROM)
for people with mental health conditons, which was made available for use in May 2016.  

This project will focus on how to meaningfully implement the data in the NHS to improve health outcomes for patients with mental health conditions.  A licence is required to use ReQoL and these licences are free to the National Health Service and publicly funded research.  Over 91 licences have been granted to a range of organisations, including 23 mental health trusts.  We are currently leading on implementation, collaborating with partners across the NHS to implement ReQoL.

ReQoL is currently available in English and Hindi and work is taking place to translate the questionnaire into other languages.  

Read about our work with the Leeds and York Partnership NHS Foundation Trust.