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Social support and the self-rated health of older people

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

ABSTRACT

The lack of social support in elderly populations incurs real societal costs and can lead to their poor health. The aim of this study is to investigate the self-rated health (SRH) and social support among older people as well as its associated factors.

We conducted a cross-sectional study among 312 urban community-dwelling elderly aged 65 to 90 years in Tainan Taiwan and Fuzhou Fujian Province from March 2012 to October 2012. A Spearson correlation test, independent t test, a Pearson χ2 test, a linear regression analysis, and a multiple-level model were performed to analyze the results.

The participants identified children as the most important source of objective and subjective support, followed by spouse and relatives. Tainan's elderly received more daily life assistance and emotional support, showed stronger awareness of the need to seek help, and maintained a higher frequency of social interactions compared with the elderly in Fuzhou. The mean objective support, subjective support, and support utilization scores as well as the overall social support among Tainan's elderly were significantly high compared with the scores among Fuzhou's elderly. Further, Tainan's elderly rated better SRH than Fuzhou's elderly. Correlation analysis showed that social support was significantly correlated with city, age, living conditions, marital status, and SRH. Multiple linear regression analysis, with social support as a dependent variable, retained the following independent predictors in the final regression model: city (4.792, 95% confidence interval [CI]: 3.068–6.516, P = 0.000), age (−0.805, 95% CI: −1.394 to −0.135, P = 0.013), marital status (−1.260, 95% CI: −1.891 to −0.629, P = 0.000), living conditions (4.069, 95% CI: 3.022–5.116, P = 0.000), and SRH −1.941, 95% CI: −3.194 to −0.688, P = 0.003). The multiple-level model showed that city would impact older people's social support (χ2 = 5.103, P < 0.001). Marital status (−2.133, 95% CI: −2.768 to −1.499, P = 0.000), education (1.697, 95% CI: 0.589–2.805 P = 0.003), living conditions (4.20, 95% CI: 1.762–6.638, P = 0.000), and SRH (−3.144, 95% CI: −4.502 to −1.727, P = 0.000) were the associated factors. Thus, city, age, marital status, education, living conditions, and SRH might be the associated factors for social support among older people.

This study presents some feasible implications for social support improvement in China and in other nations worldwide.

No MeSH data available.


A multistage stratified random cluster sampling technique was used to recruit the sample. In Tainan and Fuzhou, 10 administrative districts were randomly selected from these districts to achieve the desired sample size. A total of 312 older people completed survey.
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Figure 1: A multistage stratified random cluster sampling technique was used to recruit the sample. In Tainan and Fuzhou, 10 administrative districts were randomly selected from these districts to achieve the desired sample size. A total of 312 older people completed survey.

Mentions: This was a cross-sectional study. The target population was residents aged 65 years and older, living in local urban communities for over 6 months, and was able to communicate in the Mandarin or Minnan dialects. The survey was conducted from March 2012 to October 2012. We used multistage stratified random cluster sampling method to collect the sample. The sample size was calculated based on the proportion of older people within the total population in the 2 cities in 2011. According to the layout of Tainan and Fuzhou, we randomly selected several communities from each administrative district. In Tainan, 4 administrative districts were stratified into low- and high-economic-level groups, and 1 or 2 districts was randomly selected from each group, a total of 6 communities (low economic level: n = 3; high economic level: n = 3) were selected from these districts. In Fuzhou, 6 administrative districts were stratified into low- and high-economic-level groups, and 2 districts were randomly selected from each group, a total of 8 communities (low economic level: n = 4; high economic level: n = 4) were selected. Finally, 360 older people were selected from Tainan and Fuzhou (Fig. 1). Data were collected by self-designed questionnaire including sociodemographic information and Social Support Rate Scale (SSRS).


Social support and the self-rated health of older people
A multistage stratified random cluster sampling technique was used to recruit the sample. In Tainan and Fuzhou, 10 administrative districts were randomly selected from these districts to achieve the desired sample size. A total of 312 older people completed survey.
© Copyright Policy - open-access
Related In: Results  -  Collection

License
Show All Figures
getmorefigures.php?uid=PMC4998465&req=5

Figure 1: A multistage stratified random cluster sampling technique was used to recruit the sample. In Tainan and Fuzhou, 10 administrative districts were randomly selected from these districts to achieve the desired sample size. A total of 312 older people completed survey.
Mentions: This was a cross-sectional study. The target population was residents aged 65 years and older, living in local urban communities for over 6 months, and was able to communicate in the Mandarin or Minnan dialects. The survey was conducted from March 2012 to October 2012. We used multistage stratified random cluster sampling method to collect the sample. The sample size was calculated based on the proportion of older people within the total population in the 2 cities in 2011. According to the layout of Tainan and Fuzhou, we randomly selected several communities from each administrative district. In Tainan, 4 administrative districts were stratified into low- and high-economic-level groups, and 1 or 2 districts was randomly selected from each group, a total of 6 communities (low economic level: n = 3; high economic level: n = 3) were selected from these districts. In Fuzhou, 6 administrative districts were stratified into low- and high-economic-level groups, and 2 districts were randomly selected from each group, a total of 8 communities (low economic level: n = 4; high economic level: n = 4) were selected. Finally, 360 older people were selected from Tainan and Fuzhou (Fig. 1). Data were collected by self-designed questionnaire including sociodemographic information and Social Support Rate Scale (SSRS).

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

ABSTRACT

The lack of social support in elderly populations incurs real societal costs and can lead to their poor health. The aim of this study is to investigate the self-rated health (SRH) and social support among older people as well as its associated factors.

We conducted a cross-sectional study among 312 urban community-dwelling elderly aged 65 to 90 years in Tainan Taiwan and Fuzhou Fujian Province from March 2012 to October 2012. A Spearson correlation test, independent t test, a Pearson χ2 test, a linear regression analysis, and a multiple-level model were performed to analyze the results.

The participants identified children as the most important source of objective and subjective support, followed by spouse and relatives. Tainan's elderly received more daily life assistance and emotional support, showed stronger awareness of the need to seek help, and maintained a higher frequency of social interactions compared with the elderly in Fuzhou. The mean objective support, subjective support, and support utilization scores as well as the overall social support among Tainan's elderly were significantly high compared with the scores among Fuzhou's elderly. Further, Tainan's elderly rated better SRH than Fuzhou's elderly. Correlation analysis showed that social support was significantly correlated with city, age, living conditions, marital status, and SRH. Multiple linear regression analysis, with social support as a dependent variable, retained the following independent predictors in the final regression model: city (4.792, 95% confidence interval [CI]: 3.068–6.516, P = 0.000), age (−0.805, 95% CI: −1.394 to −0.135, P = 0.013), marital status (−1.260, 95% CI: −1.891 to −0.629, P = 0.000), living conditions (4.069, 95% CI: 3.022–5.116, P = 0.000), and SRH −1.941, 95% CI: −3.194 to −0.688, P = 0.003). The multiple-level model showed that city would impact older people's social support (χ2 = 5.103, P < 0.001). Marital status (−2.133, 95% CI: −2.768 to −1.499, P = 0.000), education (1.697, 95% CI: 0.589–2.805 P = 0.003), living conditions (4.20, 95% CI: 1.762–6.638, P = 0.000), and SRH (−3.144, 95% CI: −4.502 to −1.727, P = 0.000) were the associated factors. Thus, city, age, marital status, education, living conditions, and SRH might be the associated factors for social support among older people.

This study presents some feasible implications for social support improvement in China and in other nations worldwide.

No MeSH data available.