Research on rural aging has developed considerably since publication of the book Aging in Rural Canada (Butterworths, 1991). The purpose of this article is twofold: to provide a retrospective on issues in rural aging from this book, and to review Canadian literature on rural aging since its publication. The review highlights new directions in conceptual definitions of rural, and in issues of social engagement, independence, family and social networks, and rural services and health. Two main research lenses are evident. The marginalization lens focuses on rural seniors with health problems, but has not included those marginalized by poverty or gender. The aging-well lens focuses on contributions and engagement, but has omitted research on social relationships and quality of family interaction. The report includes a call for interrogation about interaction between people and place, and for understanding issues of rural diversity and processes of rural aging.
The paradigm surrounding the delivery of care for individuals with intellectual disabilities (ID) is shifting from a deficit-based approach to a support-based approach. However, it is unclear whether measures of support act as a proxy for adaptive functioning.
A sample of 40 staff or family members of individuals with ID completed the Supports Intensity Scale and the Scales of Independent Behavior-Revised, Short Form. Correlations were used to examine the relationship between these scales.
The subscales of the Supports Intensity Scale as well as the overall support needs index were highly correlated with both the Broad Independence W score and the support score (which reflects both maladaptive and adaptive behaviours) of the Scales of Independent Behavior-Revised.
The strong correlations between these two scales confirm previous findings that current measures of support and measures of adaptive behaviour tap into the same underlying construct. These findings have implications for the development, use and interpretation of research and planning tools.
To identify the health-related needs of community-dwelling older adults with mild memory loss.
Qualitative study using semistructured, audiotaped, face-to-face interviews and focus groups.
A large community in Newfoundland.
Twenty-two adults between the ages of 58 and 80 years.
This needs assessment used a qualitative methodology of collecting and analyzing narrative data to develop an understanding of the issues, resources, and constraints of community-dwelling older adults with mild memory loss. Data were collected through semistructured, audiotaped, face-to-face interviews and focus groups. Transcripts of the interviews were analyzed using interpretive phenomenologic analysis.
Three constitutive patterns with relational themes and subthemes were identified: forgetting and remembering, normalizing yet questioning, and having limited knowledge of resources. Participants described many examples of how their daily lives were affected by forgetfulness. They had very little knowledge of resources that provided information or support. Most of the participants believed they could not discuss their memory problems with their family doctors.
It is important for older adults with mild memory loss to have access to resources that will assist them in understanding their condition and make them feel supported.
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Despite the proliferation of age-friendly cities in Canada that are intended to support older adults to age well, there are still many inequalities between groups of older adults, particularly, and of concern for this paper, between Indigenous older adults, who experience colonialism's ongoing impacts, and non-Indigenous older adults. A better understanding of factors that inform these inequalities will help in the development of policies and programs that better support Indigenous older adults to age well and, thus, will contribute to ameliorating the inequalities that they face. Using a community-based participatory research approach, informed by a postcolonial theoretical lens, in this paper we addressed the question, "what community-level factors contribute to Indigenous older adults (aged 55 years and over) feeling supported to age well in the city of Ottawa?" We specifically examined this question in relation to the age-friendly communities framework, which guides the City of Ottawa's Older Adult Plan. Thematic analysis of semi-structured interviews, focus groups, and photovoice with 32 First Nations and Inuit older adults revealed that the participants felt both supported and unsupported to age well. More specifically, there were two main areas in which they felt they could be better supported to age well: the social environment and physical environment. There were three subthemes within the social environment theme: responsive health and community support services, respect and recognition, and communication and information. Within the physical environment theme there were four subthemes: transportation, housing, accessibility, and gathering space. The results demonstrate that despite there being similarities in the areas that the participants felt they needed support and the areas on which the Older Adult Plan focuses, if the domains of aging well initiatives do not better account for the impacts of colonialism, it is unlikely that they will be effective in supporting Indigenous older adults' health and well-being.
The Life-Space Assessment (LSA), developed in the USA, is an instrument focusing on mobility with respect to reaching different areas defined as life-spaces, extending from the room where the person sleeps to mobility outside one's hometown. A newly translated Swedish version of the LSA (LSA-S) has been tested for test-retest reliability, but the validity remains to be tested. The purpose of the present study was to examine the concurrent validity of the LSA-S, by comparing and correlating the LSA scores to other measures of mobility.
The LSA was included in a population-based study of health, functioning and mobility among older persons in Sweden, and the present analysis comprised 312 community-dwelling participants. To test the concurrent validity, the LSA scores were compared to a number of other mobility-related variables, including the Short Physical Performance Battery (SPPB) as well as "stair climbing", "transfers", "transportation", "food shopping", "travel for pleasure" and "community activities". The LSA total mean scores for different levels of the other mobility-related variables, and measures of correlation were calculated.
Higher LSA total mean scores were observed with higher levels of all the other mobility related variables. Most of the correlations between the LSA and the other mobility variables were large (r?=?0.5-1.0) and significant at the 0.01 level. The LSA total score, as well as independent life-space and assistive life-space correlated with transportation (0.63, 0.66, 0.64) and food shopping (0.55, 0.58, 0.55). Assistive life-space also correlated with SPPB (0.47). With respect to maximal life-space, the correlations with the mobility-related variables were generally lower (below 0.5), probably since this aspect of life-space mobility is highly influenced by social support and is not so dependent on the individual's own physical function.
LSA was shown to be a valid measure of mobility when using the LSA total, independent LS or assistive LSA.
The aims of the present study were to: (1) describe and compare individual characteristics of hospitalized and not hospitalized community living persons, and (2) to determine factors that are associated with hospitalization risk over time. We conducted a prospective study with a multifactorial approach based on the population-based longitudinal Swedish Adoption/Twin Study of Aging (SATSA). A total of 772 Swedes (mean age at baseline 69.7 years, range 46-103, 59.8% females) answered a postal questionnaire about physical and psychological health, personality and socioeconomic factors. During nine years of follow-up, information on hospitalizations and associated diagnoses were obtained from national registers. Results show that 484 persons (63%) had at least one hospital admission during the follow-up period. The most common causes of admission were cardiovascular diseases (25%) and tumors (22%). Cox proportional hazard regression models controlling for age, sex and dependency within twin pairs, showed that higher age (HR=1.02, p
Dementia-friendly communities, as communities that enable people with dementia to remain involved and active and have control over their lives for as long as possible, centrally involve social support and social networks for people living with dementia. The purpose of this research was to explore and understand the context of dementia in rural northern communities in Ontario with an emphasis on understanding how dementia friendly the communities were. Using qualitative methods, interviews were conducted with a total of 71 participants, including 37 health service providers, 15 care partners, 2 people living with dementia and 17 other community members such as local business owners, volunteers, local leaders, friends and neighbours. The strong social networks and informal social support that were available to people living with dementia, and the strong commitment by community members, families and health care providers to support people with dementia, were considered a significant asset to the community. A culture of care and looking out for each other contributed to the social support provided. In particular, the familiarity with others provided a supportive community environment. People with dementia were looked out for by community members, and continued to remain connected in their communities. The social support provided in these communities demonstrated that although fragile, this type of support offered somewhat of a safety net for individuals living with dementia. This work provides important insights into the landscape of dementia in rural northern Ontario communities, and the strong social supports that sustain people with dementia remaining in the communities.
The Icelandic old-age care system is universal and the official goal is to support older people live independently for as long as possible. The aim of this study is to analyse living conditions and use of formal and informal care of older people in Iceland.
The results are based on the new study ICEOLD, a telephone survey which included questions on social network, health, activities of daily living, and received support from the community and/or from relatives, neighbours, and friends.
Almost half of the sample (47%) receives some kind of care, with 27% of them receiving only informal care, which is understood to mean that informal care is of great importance and families are the main providers of help. For hypothetical future long-term care, older people wish to be cared for in their homes, but those already in need of assistance prefer to be cared for in institutions.
Caring relatives are the main providers of support to older people in their homes and it is important to provide them with suitable formal support when the care responsibility increases.
As the care system in Iceland is now under reconstruction, the important contribution of informal carers must be recognised and taken into account when planning the care of older people.
The purpose of this study was to construct a theory on an environment that would support the well-being of home-dwelling elderly people in northern Finland.
The study was carried out according to the phases of theory formulation using both qualitative and quantitative methods.
The data of the first phase consisted of focused interviews (n=39) with home-dwelling elderly people over the age of 65 years. Judgement-based snowball sampling was used. By means of inductive concept synthesis, hypothetical models were constructed of a physical, social and symbolic environment that would support the well-being of the elderly. In order to verify the concepts of the hypothetical model, an instrument was constructed in the second phase of the study and its reliability was evaluated by a panel of experts consisting of nurses (n=15), through expert evaluations (n=3) and by postal questionnaire. The final phase of the study (n=328) also targeted home-dwelling elderly people living in northern Finland. The sampling method used was a stratified random sampling. The data of (n=328) were analysed by principal component analysis (PCA) and confirmatory factor analysis (CFA).
The physical environment that supports the well-being of the elderly includes a northern environment, an environment that enables safe activity and a pleasant physical environment. The social environment that supports well-being enables the elderly to receive help, allows them to keep in contact with family members and friends as providers of support to their well-being and offers a pleasant living community. The symbolic environment that supports well-being consists of the ideal attributes of well-being, spirituality, the normative attribute of well-being and a sense of history.
Even though the environment is artificially divided into separate areas in the theory, in putting the results into practice, it needs to be taken into account that observing separate areas of the environment does not provide a comprehensive view on the connection between environment and well-being.
Our aim was to study the effects of sense of coherence (SOC) on training adherence and interindividual changes in muscle strength, mobility, and balance after resistance training in older people with hip fracture history. These are secondary analyses of a 12-week randomized controlled trial of progressive resistance training in 60- to 85-year-old community-dwelling people 0.5-7 years after hip fracture (n = 45; ISRCTN34271567). Pre- and posttrial assessments included SOC, knee extension strength, walking speed, timed up-and-go (TUG), and Berg Balance Scale (BBS). Group-by-SOC interaction effects (repeated-measures ANOVA) were statistically significant for TUG (p = .005) and BBS (p = .040), but not for knee extension strength or walking speed. Weaker SOC was associated with poorer training adherence (mixed model; p = .009). Thus, more complicated physical tasks did not improve in those with weaker SOC, independently of training adherence. Older people with weaker SOC may need additional psychosocial support in physical rehabilitation programs to optimize training response.