Background: Disparities between mental health patients and their professional caregivers in quality of life appraisals have been identified, however, the structure that such disparities assume is unknown. Aims: To examine the network structure of quality of life appraisals and disparities using network analysis. Methods: Participants were 1639 persons with schizophrenia using psychiatric rehabilitation services and their primary professional caregivers (N = 582). Quality of life for persons with schizophrenia was measured based on an abbreviated version of the Manchester Short Assessment of Quality of Life. Appraisals were made self-reported and by professional caregivers. Disparities scores between the aforementioned were computed. Network analysis was performed on all quality of life appraisals. Sensitivity analyses were conducted. Results: The self-appraised network significantly (p < 0.05) differed by network strength compared to the caregiver-appraised network. Self-appraised network communities (clusters of quality of life items) were health conditions and socioeconomic system, whereas caregiver-appraised network communities were social activities, and combined socioeconomic and health conditions. Strength centrality was highest for self-appraised social status and for caregiver-appraised residential status (Z = 1.63, Z = 1.12, respectively). The disparity scores network clustered into two communities: social relations and combined financial and health conditions. The most central appraisal disparities were in social status. Conclusions: Quality of life differed when self-appraised by persons with schizophrenia compared to when appraised by their professional caregivers, yet the salient role of social relations was shared. The latter may be an initial focus of discussion by persons with schizophrenia and their caregivers.
- Network analysis
- Quality of life
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Psychiatry and Mental health
- Biological Psychiatry