Social exclusion, self-rated health and depression among older people in China: Evidence from a national survey of older persons
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BACKGROUND: It is well established that social exclusion is a key social determinant of health; however, such association between social exclusion and health outcomes among older people remain a relatively under-researched area. This paper explores the effects of four dimensions of social exclusion on self-rated health and depression among older people in China. METHODS: This paper includes 8038 individuals aged 60 and over from the first wave national multi-stage probability sample (2014) from the China Longitudinal Aging Social Survey (CLASS). Descriptive univariate information for individual variables and four dimensions of social exclusion are presented. Multinomial and binary logistic regression models are used to examine the associations between social exclusion and self-rated health and depression. RESULTS: Older people who were in the lower level of exclusion from social relationships or subjective feelings of exclusion were significantly less likely to report fair or poor self-rated health than people in the higher level of exclusion (lower level of exclusion from social activities was significantly associated with being less likely to report poor SRH only). Older people who were in the lower level of subjective feeling of exclusion or exclusion from financial products were significantly less likely to report depression. CONCLUSIONS: Different dimensions of social exclusion have different effects on self-rated health and depression. Social policies need to reflect this and efforts of services could usefully be oriented to prevent multi-dimensions of social exclusion. Ultimately, such policies should have the potential to enhance the health of older people in China.
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