Successful aging : from the perspective of Hong Kong elderly : a qualitative approach

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Successful aging : from the perspective of Hong Kong elderly : a qualitative approach

 

Author: Chan, Lai-hung Candy
Title: Successful aging : from the perspective of Hong Kong elderly : a qualitative approach
Degree: M.Sc.
Year: 2003
Subject: Hong Kong Polytechnic University -- Dissertations
Aging -- China -- Hong Kong
Department: School of Nursing
Pages: vii, 102 leaves ; 30 cm
Language: English
InnoPac Record: http://library.polyu.edu.hk/record=b1717738
URI: http://theses.lib.polyu.edu.hk/handle/200/3376
Abstract: In Hong Kong, life expectancy has been rising steadily. This increasing long life will bring an unprecedented aging population. The elderly will be expected to consume a large proportion of expenditure on health care. An increasing elderly population will increase the burden of the health care system. Previous studies used to perceive aging in a negative way. In recent years, there is increased attention to promote a positive perception in aged life. Successful aging is a complex and multifaceted concept. This can be used to describe people with minimum physiological disturbance and independent functioning in aged life. Furthermore, people also realize the contribution of psychosocial factors in successful aging. In general, this is a term to describe both physical and psychosocial wellbeing. Aging definitely brings along with many changes. Exploring the perception of aging and successful aging from the perspective of Hong Kong elderly is needed. Other than providing a favorable environment for people to attain the goal of success in the aged life, this brings insights to explore the potential of human beings to cope with the changes. This study adopted a qualitative phenomenological design and together with the purposeful sampling approach, 6 elderly were invited to participate in the semi-structured interview. Thematic analysis of the verbatim responses indicated that elderly in Hong Kong agreed with the findings in previous studies. Successful aging is described as maintaining wellbeing both physically and psychosocially. However successful aging seemed a new term to the subjects in the study. They expressed their perception in subjective and individualized base. This gives a chance to make changes. If the society promotes aging in a more positive way and help them to achieve their own goal through their own choice and effort, this will bring a sense of wellbeing to them in aged life. This positive experiences can act as a driving force to motivate people participate in their aged life, even it is powerful for them to fight wit the adverse situation emerged in the aging process. The knowledge developed from this study helps the health care professionals, especially, those working in a primary health setting to think about strategic planning for people to prepare aging as early as possible. Aging is the last stage of life course which is a continuous process. Promoting success in aged life is not as effective as promoting this sense in early stage of the life. Furthermore increase understanding about aging and successful aging from the perspective of the elderly can help the health care professionals to act as the facilitator in helping the elderly to live in their last stage of life with plenty of enjoyment.

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