Although many countries’ populations have experienced increasing life expectancy in recent decades, quality of life (QoL) trends in the general population have yet to be investigated. This paper investigates whether QoL changed for the general Dutch population over the period 2001–2008. A beta regression model was employed to address specific features of the QoL distribution (i.e., boundedness, skewness, and heteroskedasticity), as well non-linear age and time trends. Quality-adjusted life expectancy (QALE) was calculated by combining model estimates of mean QoL with mortality rates provided by Statistics Netherlands. Changes in QALE were decomposed into those changes caused by QoL changes and those caused by mortality-rate changes. The results revealed a significant increase in QoL over 2001–2008 for both genders and most ages. For example, QALE for a man/woman aged 20 was found to have increased by 2.3/1.9 healthy years, of which 0.6/0.8 was due to QoL improvements.

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The European Journal of Health Economics
Institute for Medical Technology Assessment (iMTA)

Gheorghe, M., Brouwer, W., & van Baal, P. (2015). Did the health of the Dutch population improve between 2001 and 2008? Investigating age- and gender-specific trends in quality of life. The European Journal of Health Economics, 16(8), 801–811. doi:10.1007/s10198-014-0630-4