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Revista médica de Chile

Print version ISSN 0034-9887

Abstract

MARIN L, Pedro Paulo et al. Biomedical impact of traveling for Chilean elderly. Rev. méd. Chile [online]. 2004, vol.132, n.5, pp.573-678. ISSN 0034-9887.  http://dx.doi.org/10.4067/S0034-98872004000500006.

Background: In Chile there is a program named "Vacations for Elderly during Low Season". Aim: To characterize participants of this program and to measure the impact of traveling in their health and wellbeing. Material and methods: Two anonymous and voluntary questionnaires were applied to 4200 participants, before and after a ten days vacation package. Results: Before traveling, questionnaires were answered by 802 subjects, and after traveling by 4057 (69% women, 22% older than 75 years old, 15.8% living alone). The presence and maintaining of good health were most appreciated at this age and 59% classified their health as good or excellent. Twenty five percent referred sensory problems (seeing or hearing), 12% reported urinary incontinence and 21% presented falls in the last three months; depression screening (GDS-5) was positive in 16%. Chronic disease prevalence was similar to the general Chilean elderly population. After traveling they reported significant improvements in the items sociability, wellbeing, mood, appetite, insomnia and ostheoarthritic pain. Conclusions: Elderly who traveled were mainly women, who thought that maintaining good health is the most precious value. After traveling they improved significantly different aspects of wellbeing. Promotion of this kind of recreation programs is an important tool for integration and enhancement of quality of life in elderly subjects in our country (Rev Méd Chile 2004; 132: 573-8).

Keywords : Aged; Fail elderly; Travel.

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