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EDUCATION AS A MEANS TO INFLUENCE AWARENESS OF AND STIGMA TOWARD AGING IN PLACE RESIDENTIAL ASSISTIVE DEVICES

Hensley, Sharon Edwina (2016) EDUCATION AS A MEANS TO INFLUENCE AWARENESS OF AND STIGMA TOWARD AGING IN PLACE RESIDENTIAL ASSISTIVE DEVICES. Masters thesis, Radford University.

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Abstract

Aging in place (AIP) in one’s existing residence is thought to be a more affordable housing alternative (Ahn, Beamish, & Goss, 2008; HAC, 2014) than assistive living or nursing homes and is desired by 91% of those aged 50 to 80 (P&GSEI, 2014b, 2014c). Considerable residential upgrades are required, however, to aptly accommodate the physical and mental degenerative affect aging has on the body and because U.S. housing is severely lacking in the assistive devices required to respond to those needs (JCHSHU-1, 2014). Research has proven assistive device implementation can slow the decline of elderly functionality and also reduce the cost of long-term institutionalization and certain in-home personnel costs through a systematic upgrade approach (Mann, Ottenbacher, Fraas, Tomita, & Granger, 1999). Yet, only 20% of those aged 40 and older have sought information on long term care, which includes knowledge on AIP upgrades, and in one study only 28% have begun to upgrade (AP-NORC, 2014) and 9% in another (Merrill Lynch, 2014). This is a problem considering boomers comprise almost 24% of the population (Raphelson, 2014). This experimental study, using design thinking strategies, was conducted in order to understand if boomer awareness of and stigma toward AIP residential assistive devices and the term and concept of ‘aging in place’ were factors influencing AIP device adoption and if education, via a truncated list of expert recommended AIP checklist devices, could influence both. Pre-test results from 15 boomer participants revealed average individual and group knowledge of devices was minimal, that stigma exists toward some devices, and that stigma toward devices could be swayed when arbitrated within groups. Individual AIP device knowledge doubled during the stimulus, average stigma toward over half of the devices present in both the pre-test and test decreased, and in the post-test, individuals were unable to name any additional assistive devices. Results from this study suggest education was able to increase boomer knowledge of assistive devices and the term ‘aging in place’. Results on stigma toward the term ‘aging in place’ revealed a small percentage felt stigma toward the term and the concept. Results on device stigma as an adoption barrier, however, were inconclusive. Finally, this study used participant created prototypes to understand the means by which boomers would like to be educated on AIP upgrades.

Item Type: Thesis (Masters)
Subjects: L Education > LC Special aspects of education > LC5201 Education extension. Adult education. Continuing education
T Technology > TH Building construction
T Technology > TS Manufactures
Divisions: UNSPECIFIED
Depositing User: Sharon Edwina Hensley
Date Deposited: 27 Mar 2017 17:54
Last Modified: 27 Mar 2017 17:54
URI: http://wagner.radford.edu/id/eprint/284

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