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Research on the elderly during COVID-19 - Dr. Sarah Friedel

Date
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Dr. Sarah Friedel
Summary

This is an Accepted Manuscript for International Psychogeriatrics as part of the

Cambridge Coronavirus Collection.

DOI: 10.1017/S1041610220001258

 

 

COVID-19 Health Worries and Anxiety Symptoms among Older Adults: The

Moderating Role of Ageism

Dr. Yoav S. Bergman * 1

Dr. Sara Cohen-Fridel 2

Prof. Amit Shrira 3

Prof. Ehud Bodner 3,4

Prof. Yuval Palgi 5

1 Faculty of Social Work, Ashkelon Academic College, 12 Ben Tzvi St., Ashkelon,

78211, Israel

2 School of Education, Bar-Ilan University, Ramat-Gan, Israel 52900

3 Interdisciplinary Department of Social Sciences, Bar-Ilan University, Ramat-Gan,

Israel 52900

4 Department of Music, Bar-Ilan University, Ramat-Gan, Israel 52900

5 Department of Gerontology, University of Haifa, 199 Abba Khoushy Ave., Haifa,

3498838, Israel

-*Corresponding Author:

Dr. Yoav S. Bergman

Faculty of Social Work, Ashkelon Academic College

12 Ben Tzvi St., Ashkelon, 78211, Israel

Tel. +972-54-2124400, Fax +972-9-9516212

Email: yoav.s.bergman@gmail.com

https://www.cambridge.org/core/terms. https://doi.org/10.1017/S1041610220001258

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Abstract

A prominent feature of anxiety in late life is concerns regarding physical health.

Anxiety symptoms among older adults have been connected with various psychological

outcomes, including social isolation and loneliness. During the COVID-19 pandemic, many

societies have demonstrated increased ageist attitudes, encouraging older adults to distance

themselves from society. Accordingly, the current study examined the moderating role of

COVID-19-related ageism in the connection between COVID-19 health worries and anxiety

symptoms among older adults.

Data was collected from 243 older adults (age range 60-92; M = 69.75, SD = 6.69),

who completed scales assessing COVID-19-related health worries and ageism, as well as

anxiety symptoms. The results demonstrated that both health worries and ageism were

positively associated with anxiety symptoms. Moreover, the connection between health

worries and anxiety symptoms was more pronounced among older adults with high ageism

levels. The study highlights the vulnerability of older adults in general, and ageist older adults

in particular, to the negative consequences of COVID-19-related health worries, and

emphasizes the role of the increased ageist stance of society during the pandemic in this

regard.

Keywords: Ageism, Anxiety symptoms, COVID-19, COVID-19-related health

worries

Attached File

Last Updated Date : 07/07/2020