Clients and professionals elicit long‐term care preferences by using ‘What matters to me’: A process evaluation in the Netherlands

Catharina M. van Leersum*, Albine Moser, Ben van Steenkiste, Judith R.L.M. Wolf, Trudy van der Weijden

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review


Background: 'What matters to me' is a five-category preference elicitation tool to assist clients and professionals in choosing long-term care. This study aimed to evaluate the use of and experiences with this tool.
Methods: A mixed-method process evaluation was applied. Participants were 71 clients or relatives, and 12 professionals. They were all involved in decision-making on long-term care. Data collection comprised online user activity logs (N = 71), questionnaires (N = 38) and interviews (N = 20). Descriptive statistics was used for quantitative data, and a thematic analysis for qualitative data.
Results: Sixty-nine per cent of participants completed one or more categories in an average time of 6.9 (±0.03) minutes. The tool was rated 6.63 (±0.88) of 7 in the Post-Study System Usability Questionnaire (PSSUQ). Ninety-five per cent experienced the tool as useful in practice. Suggestions for improvement included a separate version for relatives and a non-digital version. Although professionals thought the potentially extended consultation time could be problematic, all participants would recommend the tool to others.
Conclusion: 'What matters to me' seems useful to assist clients and professionals with preference elicitation in long-term care. Evaluation of the impact on consultations between clients and professionals by using 'What matters to me' is needed.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)e1037-e1047
Number of pages11
JournalHealth & Social Care in the Community
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - Jul 2022
Externally publishedYes


  • decision support technique
  • long-term care
  • patient preferences
  • preference elicitation
  • process evaluation


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