Accession Number : ADA260664


Title :   Health and Social Support of the Elderly


Descriptive Note : Doctoral thesis


Corporate Author : RAND CORP SANTA MONICA CA


Personal Author(s) : Raube, Kristiana


Full Text : https://apps.dtic.mil/dtic/tr/fulltext/u2/a260664.pdf


Report Date : Jan 1992


Pagination or Media Count : 134


Abstract : Many researchers have speculated as to whether social support plays a role in maintaining good health in the elderly. Yet very few have investigated whether an intervention intended to increase social support can have subsequent effects on health, in particular, mental health. This report evaluates whether a community-based, in-home preventive program can change the level of social support for, and improve the health status of, an older population. The author randomly assigned noninstitutionalized Santa Monica, California, residents aged 75 and over, who were recruited from a voter registry, to intervention (n=216) and control (n=198) groups. Intervention group participants were visited in their homes by a gerontological nurse practitioner (GNP) every 3 months for 1 year. The GNP performed a multidimensional evaluation and, in collaboration with geriatricians, recommended preventive actions. Outcome data were collected by independent examiners for experimental and control subjects every 4 months. At baseline, the author found a significant positive association between social support and health status, and an even stronger negative association between social support and depression. Specifically, tangible support (e.g., transportation) appears to be the most influential component of social support in persons aged 75 and over. However, the author also found that the intervention group participants did not have significantly different levels of social support after the first year.


Descriptors :   *MENTAL HEALTH , *INTERVENTION , *PREVENTIVE MEDICINE , *EMOTIONS , *GERIATRICS , *SOCIAL PSYCHOLOGY , THESES , QUESTIONNAIRES , COMMUNITY RELATIONS , INTERPERSONAL RELATIONS , NURSES , MEDICAL SERVICES , MORTALITY RATE


Subject Categories : Sociology and Law
      Psychology
      Medicine and Medical Research


Distribution Statement : APPROVED FOR PUBLIC RELEASE