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Gu, Danan; Dupre, Matthew Egan; & Liu, Guangya (2007). Characteristics of the Institutionalized and Community-Residing Oldest-Old in China. Social Science & Medicine, 64(4), 871-883.


Existing research on the institutionalized population of older adults is primarily limited to Western countries. This study is the first to use nationally representative data to examine differences in the institutionalized and community-residing population of the oldest-old (ages 80+) in China. Using three waves of the Chinese Longitudinal Healthy Longevity Survey (CLHLS) (1998, 2000, and 2002), we examine differences in sociodemographic characteristics, family caregiving resources, health practices, religious activity, chronic conditions, and mortality risk. The results indicate that the institutionalized oldest-old are younger, male, reside in urban areas, have lower family-care resources, and exhibit poorer health compared to those living in the community. We also find that the 2-year mortality risk for institutionalized elders is 1.35 times greater than for those residing in the community. However, the mortality differential is eliminated once the sociodemographic, family caregiving, and health characteristics of the oldest-old are taken into account. The implications of these findings are discussed.


Reference Type

Journal Article

Year Published


Journal Title

Social Science & Medicine


Gu, Danan
Dupre, Matthew Egan
Liu, Guangya