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Australas J Ageing. 2012 Mar;31(1):52-5. doi: 10.1111/j.1741-6612.2010.00503.x. Epub 2011 Apr 26.

Quality of life for older people in residential care is related to connectedness, willingness to enter care, and co-residents.

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Older Person's Health Service, University of Otago, Christchurch, New Zealand.



To establish associations with quality of life (QOL) of older people in long-term residential care facilities in two New Zealand cities.


The outcome measure of QOL was the Life Satisfaction Index. We used multiple linear regression to explore how broad categories of factors might contribute to QOL.


A total of 599 people (median age of 85 years; 74% women) participated. Response rates were 85% for facilities and 83% for residents. A resident's QOL was significantly related to the QOL of co-residents. QOL was higher for people who were more positive about entry to residential care, more physically able, and not depressed, and for those with more family and emotional support.


Attending to the circumstances around entry to residential care may enhance QOL, as may promoting physical activity, treating depression and ensuring older people remain emotionally connected to their families. In choosing a facility, noting the QOL of co-residents is important.

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