While a number of organizations and government entities have encouraged the development of more “age-friendly” environments, to date there has been limited research linking these environment features to elder outcomes. Using a representative sample of older adults living in Detroit, this study examined the association between age-friendly environment factors and self-rated health. Results indicated that access to health care, social support, and community engagement were each associated with better self-rated health, while neighborhood problems were associated with poorer self-rated health. Moreover, individual-level income and education no longer predicted self-rated health once age-friendly environment factors were taken into account. These findings highlight the need for more research documenting the effects of age-friendly environments, particularly across diverse contexts and populations.
Community-Based Research | Social Work
Lehning, Amanda J.; Smith, Richard J.; Dunkle, Ruth E.; Age-Friendly Environments and Self-Rated Health: An Exploration of Detroit Elders. Research on Aging, 2014 Jan; 36 (1): 72-94. doi: 10.1177/0164027512469214.