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Int J Equity Health. 2015 Jan 17;14:5. doi: 10.1186/s12939-015-0136-4.

Socio-economic factors related with the subjective well-being of the rural elderly people living independently in China.

Author information

1
School of Politics and Public Administration, Soochow University, Collaborative Innovation Center for New-type Urbanization and Social Governance of Jiangsu Province, Suzhou, China. scuzhouyicheng@163.com.
2
School of Stastistics and Mathemetics, Yunnan University of Finance and Economics, Kunming, China. zhoulinyi1017@163.com.
3
School of Management, Zhejiang International Studies University, Hangzhou, China. zjufuchangl@126.com.
4
School of Philosophy and sociology, Northwest University, Xi'an, China. nwwangyou@sohu.com.
5
School of Government, Central University of Finance and Economics, Beijing, China. liuqlcufe@163.com.
6
The first affiliated hospital of Soochow University, Suzhou, China. sdwuhongtao@163.com.
7
Nanjing University of Science and Technology, Nanjing, China. zhangrj1973@sohu.com.
8
Chinese Academy of Sciences, Nanjing, China. linfengzh@126.com.

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

Many Chinese elderly increasingly face the serious problem of the "empty nest" phenomenon. The elderly living independently, also called empty-nest elderly, refers to elderly people living alone whose children left home. However few studies concerned about the subjective well-being (SWB) of the elderly living independently.

METHODS:

This study employs The Memorial University of Newfoundland Scale of Happiness (MUNSH) to explore the SWB of the elderly living independently in rural areas of Wenzhou, a relatively developed region in China. 536 sampled are randomly selected.

RESULTS:

The results indicate that participants obtained low scores in positive affect, positive experience, and the total SWB score, but high scores in negative affect and negative experience. Age, low education, poor health condition and little income were found to be negatively correlated with SWB. The SWB score of the elderly living with a spouse is higher than those who divorced or lost their spouse and the score of women is lower than that of men. In addition, the survey revealed that children's support has a positive influence on the SWB of the rural elderly living independently.

CONCLUSIONS:

The elderly living independently in rural Wenzhou, China have unfavorable SWB. Poor socio-economic statuses are negative impact factors. But the children's support can help to improve. Special attention is needed to those with lower socio-economic status and less children's support.

PMID:
25595196
PMCID:
PMC4299131
DOI:
10.1186/s12939-015-0136-4
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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