The lived experience of oldest-old rural adults
Review TypeNone: Degree-based Submission
Repository Posting Date2020-07-31T20:51:38Z
Author DetailsDr. Susan Hinck, RN, PhD
Lead Author Sigma AffliationTheta Lambda at-Large
Level of EvidencePhenomenology
Research ApproachQualitative Research
The oldest-old (85+ years) age group is the fastest growing segment of the United States population. Little is known about the day-to-day experience of oldest-old rural adults. The purpose of this study was to explore life experiences of oldest-old individuals who live alone in rural Midwest communities and provide detailed description and interpretation of the meaning of their lived experiences. Aims of the study were to: (a) identify how oldest-old rural-dwelling men and women perceive the experience of living alone in their own homes; (b) analyze their perceptions of their health status and presence of acute or chronic illness; (c) examine how they modify daily patterns of living to accommodate physical discomfort, restricted mobility, and varying energy resources and demands; (d) describe what trade-offs they are willing to make between being physically safe and staying in their own homes; and (e) explore what social support or resources they perceive as necessary for them to remain living at home. The sample consisted of 19 participants (13 women, 6 men, all white, mean age 90.7 years, range 85–98 years) who were interviewed at least three times in their homes (59 total interviews). Interviews were audio taped, transcribed, and analyzed in an interpretive phenomenological tradition of paradigm cases, thematic analysis, and exemplars. Six metathemes (Embodiment, Temporality, Relationship to Other People, Relationship to the Environment, Health, and Rurality) and 30 themes highlighted the living patterns, adaptive strategies, and meanings of activities and interactions of oldest-old rural-dwelling adults. Participants described how historical, cultural, and environmental contexts shaped their everyday thoughts, activities, and what was meaningful to them. Findings can guide health-care professionals to evaluate and develop community services and help significant others (family, friends, neighbors) understand what oldest-old rural adults need to remain at home.
DescriptionThis dissertation has also been disseminated through the ProQuest Dissertations and Theses database. Dissertation/thesis number: 3051801; ProQuest document ID: 305570494. The author still retains copyright.
Advisor(s)Schneider, Joanne Kraenzle
Degree GrantorSaint Louis University
NotesThis item has not gone through this repository's peer-review process, but has been accepted by the indicated university or college in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the specified degree.
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