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Journal Article

Citation

Wee LE, Tsang TYY, Yi H, Toh SA, Lee GL, Yee J, Lee S, Oen K, Koh GCH. Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2019; 16(6): e16060967.

Affiliation

Saw Swee Hock School of Public Health, National University Health System, National University of Singapore, Singapore 119228, Singapore. ephkohch@nus.edu.sg.

Copyright

(Copyright © 2019, MDPI: Multidisciplinary Digital Publishing Institute)

DOI

10.3390/ijerph16060967

PMID

30889851

Abstract

In Singapore, a densely urbanised Asian city state, more than 80% of the population stays in public housing estates and the majority (90%) own their own homes. For the needy who cannot afford home ownership, public rental flats are available. We were interested in exploring social-environmental factors that are associated with loneliness among elderly residents of public rental housing in Singapore. We surveyed residents aged ≥60 in two Singapore public housing precincts in 2016. Loneliness was measured using a three-item scale. Sociodemographic information was obtained via standardised questionnaires. We used chi-square to identify associations between loneliness and sociodemographic characteristics, as well as neighbourhood perceptions (safety, convenience and the physical environment), on univariate analysis; and logistic regression for multivariate analysis. The response rate was 62.1% (528/800). On multivariate analysis, staying in a rental flat block was independently associated with loneliness (adjusted odds ratio, aOR = 2.10, 95% confidence interval (CI) = 1.32⁻3.36), as was staying in a poorer physical environment (aOR = 1.92, 95% CI = 1.15⁻3.22). Although needy Singapore residents share the same built environment as more well-to-do neighbours, differences in the impact of loneliness do exist.


Language: en

Keywords

loneliness; neighbourhood environment; social isolation; socioeconomic status

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