192476 Health and urban resettlement among low income elderly people in Phitsanulok, Thailand

Monday, November 9, 2009

Angkhanaporn Sornngai, DrPH , Research section, Sirindhorn College of Public Health, Phitsanulok province, Phitsanulok province, 65130, Thailand
Jens Seeberg, PhD , Dep.of Anthropology and Ethnography, University of Aarhus, Hoejbjerg, Denmark
Supasit Pannarunothai, MD, PhD , Dep.of Community Family and Occupational Medicine, Faculty of Medicine, Naresuan University, Phitsanulok, 65000, Thailand

This qualitative study explored the implications of urban resettlement among low income elderly people residing in Phitsanulok. Twelve persons participated who had moved from raft houses to an urban periphery area by order of a provincial committee. Key informants were also identified. Data collection (participant observation and in-depth interviews) was conducted during December 2005 to October 2006 and analysis was performed using content analysis. The study showed that the resettlement caused difficulties with adjusting to new living arrangements, economic hardships and physical and mental health problems. Health care was largely managed in the folk and popular sectors. If this was ineffective, the professional sector would be sought. In most cases, the traditional Thai pattern of elderly living with their children was maintained. However, elderly people are particularly vulnerable to illness and regular home visits by health care staff to facilitate communication and treatment of elderly people and health professionals are necessary to improve the quality of care. The authors suggested that a holistic view of resettlement should be adopted that minimizes social costs, sustains existing patterns of social organization, and allows for continuity of social-cultural patterns.

KEY WORDS Resettlement policy, urban poor elderly, mental health, physical health, health sectors, treatment-seeking behavior.

Learning Objectives:
To explore the implications of urban resettlement among low income elderly people residing in Phitsanulok

Keywords: Aging, Immigration

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I received a post-doctoral fellowship in medical anthropological method from UCSF in 2003. I did a qualitative research projects in aging. I am the CO-PI in this project which was funded by the Danida under the Consultative Research Committee for Development Research. see www.hum.au.dk/hsre
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.