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J Am Med Dir Assoc. 2008 Jan;9(1):45-50. doi: 10.1016/j.jamda.2007.08.009.

Centenarians' views on long life and nursing home living.

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1
Department of Sociology, Augustana College, Sioux Falls, SD 57105, USA. susan.schrader@augie.edu

Abstract

OBJECTIVES:

1) Systematically examine centenarians' perspectives on longevity and living in a nursing home (specifically food and hobby preferences). 2) Contribute to existing knowledge based on autobiographies and longitudinal and cross-sectional studies conducted in other nations and the U.S.A.

DESIGN:

Univariate and content analysis 472 Century Club applications completed by (and on behalf) of centenarians.

SETTING:

South Dakota, using a data base provided by the South Dakota Health Care Association.

PARTICIPANTS:

472 centenarians born between 1885 and 1901 and living in South Dakota nursing homes.

MEASUREMENTS:

Demographic data and answers to four open-ended questions on an application form were analyzed using SPSS and thematic analysis respectively.

RESULTS:

Centenarians identified individual physical actions, mental attitude, religious orientation, genetics, and help from others as reasons for their long lives. Two additional themes emerged. Centenarians' comments emphasized being socially engaged with others and making a personal investment in bettering the life experience for others as core elements of quality of life.

CONCLUSIONS:

Knowledge of centenarians' explanations of long life and their preferences for hobbies and food in nursing home settings may assist medical directors in enhancing quality of care delivered by the interdisciplinary team to this burgeoning population group.

PMID:
18187112
DOI:
10.1016/j.jamda.2007.08.009
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
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