Older adult social participation and its relationship with health: Rural-urban differences

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Abstract

In an aging world, there is increased need to identify places and characteristics of places that promote health among older adults. This study examines whether there are rural-urban differences in older adult social participation and its relationship with health. Using the 2003 and 2011 waves of the Wisconsin Longitudinal Study (n=3006), I find that older adults living in rural counties are less socially active than their counterparts in more-urban counties. I also find that relationships between social participation and health vary by the type of activity and rural-urban context.

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