Van Dijk, Hanna M., Jane M. Cramm, Job van Exel, & Anna P. Nieboer (2015). The ideal neighbourhood for ageing in place as perceived by frail and non-frail community-dwelling older people. Ageing and Society, 35, 1771-1795. (doi: http://dx.doi.org/10.1017/S0144686X14000622) (previously posted as in press)

Abstract: Due to demographic changes and a widely supported policy of ageing in place, the number of community-dwelling older people will increase immensely. Thus, supportive neighbourhoods enabling older people to age in place successfully are required. Using Q-methodology, we examined older people’s perceptions of the comparative importance of neighbourhood characteristics for ageing in place. Based on the World Health Organization’s Global Age-friendly Cities guide, we developed 26 statements about physical and social neighbourhood characteristics. Thirty-two older people in Rotterdam, half of whom were frail, rank-ordered these statements. Q-factor analysis revealed three distinct viewpoints each among frail and non-frail older people. Comparisons within and between groups are discussed. Although both frail and non-frail older people strongly desired a neighbourhood enabling them to age in place, they have divergent views on such a neighbourhood. Older people’s dependence on the neighbourhood seems to be dynamic, affected by changing social and physical conditions and levels of frailty.

Hanna M Van Dijk <hanna.vandijk> is with the Institute of Health Policy and Management, Erasmus University, Rotterdam, The Netherlands.

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