Introduction To measure Quality of Working Life (QWL) among cancer survivors, and to take account of the impact of cancer diagnosis and treatment on a cancer survivors’ working life, we developed the self-administered Quality of Working Life Questionnaire for Cancer Survivors (QWLQ-CS). QWL is an important predictor of work continuation. This study aimed to:
describe the Quality of Working Life (QWL) of cancer survivors, and
explore associations between the QWL of cancer survivors and health– and work–related variables.
Methods Employed and self-employed cancer survivors were recruited through hospitals and patient organisations. They completed the Quality of Working Life Questionnaire for Cancer Survivors (QWLQ-CS) and health- and work-related variables in a cross-sectional study. The QWL scores of cancer survivors were described and associations between QWL and health- and work-related variables were assessed.
Result The QWLQ-CS was completed by 302 cancer survivors (28% male) with a mean age of 52±8 years. They were diagnosed between 0 and 10 years ago with various types of cancer, such as breast cancer, gastrointestinal cancers, urological cancers and haematological cancers. The QWL mean score of cancer survivors was 75±12 (0–100). Cancer survivors had statistically significant lower QWL scores when they had been treated with chemotherapy or when they reported co-morbidity (p≤0.05). Cancer survivors without managerial positions, with low incomes or physically demanding work, and who worked a proportion of their contract hours had statistically significantly lower QWL scores (p≤0.05).
Discussion This study described the QWL of cancer survivors and associations between QWL and health- and work-related variables. Based on these variables it is possible to indicate groups of cancer survivors who need more attention and support regarding QWL and work continuation.
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