Health Status Tool Development Study

Many current measures of health assume that functional limitations (disability) are indicators of poor health.  However, disability and health researchers know that people can have a disability and be healthy. The purpose of this study was to develop and test a health status measurement tool to reliably assess the health of individuals regardless of functional ability.


We worked with a panel of experts in disability and health to develop the measure. With the panel, we developed a conceptual framework for measuring four domains of health-related quality of life (HRQOL):

  1. Physical health
  2. Mental health
  3. Social health
  4. Life Satisfaction & Beliefs

We also decided to include an Environment domain.  Environment was not seen as a central part of HRQOL, but rather as something that could influence all aspects of HRQOL, especially for people with disabilities.

An article about the new measure and its development has been published in American Journal of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation.


If you are interested in using the measure, please .

Further Reading About New Measure

The following briefs are from the State of the Science Proceedings.

Why We Need a New Measure of Health - read the brief

Developing a Function-free Measure of Health Status - read the brief

Journal Articles

Krahn GL, Horner-Johnson W, Hall TA, Roid GH, Andresen EM, Fujiura GT, Nosek MA, Cardinal BJ, Drum CE, Suzuki R, Peterson JJ. Development and psychometric assessment of the Function-Neutral Health-Related Quality of Life measure. American Journal of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation 2013;93(1):56-74.

Fujiura GT, the RRTC Expert Panel on Health Measurement. Self-reported health of persons with intellectual disabilties. Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities 2012;50(4):352-369.

Horner-Johnson W, Krahn GL, Suzuki R, Peterson JJ, Roid G, Hall T, the RRTC Expert Panel on Health Measurement. Differential performance of SF-36 items in healthy adults with and without functional limitations. Archives of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation 2010;91(4):570-575. 

Krahn GL, Fujiura G, Drum CE, Cardinal BJ, Nosek MA, the RRTC Expert Panel on Health Measurement. The dilemma of measuring perceived health status in the context of disability. Disability and Health Journal 2009;2(2):49-56.