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Citation Information

Type Journal Article - Global Health Action
Title Social gradients in self-reported health and well-being among adults aged 50 and over in Pune District, India
Volume 3(0)
Publication (Day/Month/Year) 2010
Page numbers 88-95
URL https://doaj.org/article/085cf971195a47e1867ad65ba85d8c2f
Background: India’s older population is projected to increase up to 96 million by 2011 with older people accounting for 18% of its population by 2051. The Study on Global Ageing and Adult Health aims to improve empirical understanding of health and well-being of older adults in developing countries. Objectives: To examine age and socio-economic changes on a range of key domains in self-reported health and well-being amongst older adults. Design: A cross-sectional survey of 5,430 adults aged 50 and over using a shortened version of the SAGE questionnaire to assess self-reported assessments (scales of 1–5) of performance, function, disability, quality of life and well-being. Self-reported responses were calibrated using anchoring vignettes in eight key domains of mobility, self-care, pain, cognition, interpersonal relationships, sleep/energy, affect, and vision. WHO Disability Assessment Schedule Index and WHO health scores were calculated to examine for associations with socio-demographic variables. Results: Disability in all domains increased with increasing age and decreasing levels of education. Females and the oldest old without a living spouse reported poorer health status and greater disability across all domains. Performance and functionality self-reports were similar across all SES quintiles. Self-reports on quality of life were not significantly influenced by socio-demographic variables. Discussion: The study provides standardised and comparable self-rated health data using anchoring vignettes in an older population. Though expectations of good health, function and performance decrease with age, self-reports of disability severity significantly increased with age, more so if female, if uneducated and living without a spouse. However, the presence or absence of spouse did not significantly alter quality of life self-reports, suggesting a possible protective effect provided by traditional joint family structures in India, where older people are social if not financial assets for their children.

Related studies

Hirve, Siddhivinayak, Sanjay Juvekar, Pallavi Lele, and Dhiraj Agarwal. "Social gradients in self-reported health and well-being among adults aged 50 and over in Pune District, India." Global Health Action (2010).