Cadernos de Saúde Pública
On-line version ISSN 1678-4464Print version ISSN 0102-311X
PELCASTRE-VILLAFUERTE, Blanca Estela; TREVINO-SILLER, Sandra; GONZALEZ-VAZQUEZ, Tonatiuh and MARQUEZ-SERRANO, Margarita. Social support and living conditions in poor elderly people in urban Mexico. Cad. Saúde Pública [online]. 2011, vol.27, n.3, pp.460-470. ISSN 1678-4464. http://dx.doi.org/10.1590/S0102-311X2011000300007.
The aim of this paper was to analyze social support and living conditions among poor elderly people in Mexican cities. A qualitative study with eight focus groups was carried out in Guadalajara, Cuernavaca, Chilpancingo, and Culiacan, Mexico, in 2005. Forty men and 63 women participated in the study. The main support for the elderly in daily living came from their immediate family and in some cases from neighbors. Social support was basically material and economic, in addition to providing company and transportation for medical appointments. Daily emotional support, companionship, and social inclusion were minimal or absent. The study identified a significant lack of support from government and religious or civil society organizations. The family is still the main source of support for the elderly. Increased government collaboration is dramatically needed to combat the misconception that the needs of the elderly are the individual family's responsibility rather than a collaborative effort by society.
Keywords : Aged; Poverty; Social Conditions; Social Support.