Volunteering is associated with delayed mortality in older people: analysis of the longitudinal study of aging.

  • Harris A
  • Thoresen C
  • A.H.S. H
 et al. 
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Abstract

The Longitudinal Study of Aging (LSOA) assessed the health and social functioning of a representative sample of 7527 American community-dwelling older people (>70 years). We tested the hypothesis that frequent volunteering is associated with less mortality risk when the effects of socio-demographics, medical status, physical activity and social integration are controlled. We used Cox proportional hazards analyses to assess the unadjusted and adjusted associations between frequency of volunteering and time-to-death (96-month follow-up). Death occurred in 38.3 percent of the sample. After adjusting for covariates, frequent volunteers had significantly reduced mortality compared to non-volunteers. This association was greatest for those who frequently visited with friends or attended religious services.

Author-supplied keywords

  • *Aging/px [Psychology]
  • *Health Surveys
  • *Mortality
  • *Volunteers/px [Psychology]
  • *aging
  • *mortality
  • *volunteer
  • 80 and over
  • Aged
  • Aging
  • Aging: psychology
  • Female
  • Health Surveys
  • Humans
  • Longitudinal Studies
  • Male
  • Mortality
  • Proportional Hazards Models
  • Risk
  • Social Support
  • Time Factors
  • United States
  • United States/ep [Epidemiology]
  • United States: epidemiology
  • Volunteers
  • Volunteers: psychology
  • aged
  • article
  • controlled study
  • covariance
  • demography
  • female
  • follow up
  • friend
  • health status
  • human
  • longitudinal study
  • male
  • physical activity
  • priority journal
  • religion
  • risk assessment
  • social aspect
  • statistical analysis
  • statistical significance

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Authors

  • Alex H S Harris

  • Carl E Thoresen

  • Harris A.H.S.

  • Thoresen C.E.

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