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Keywords:

  • depression;
  • gerotranscendence;
  • life satisfaction;
  • nursing;
  • physical function;
  • social support;
  • spirituality

wang j.-j. (2011) A structural model of the bio-psycho-socio-spiritual factors influencing the development towards gerotranscendence in a sample of institutionalized elders. Journal of Advanced Nursing67(12), 2628–2636.

Abstract

Aims.  This paper is a report of a study to determine the bio-psycho-socio-spiritual factors influencing the development towards gerotranscendence in institutionalized older people. Physical ability, depressive symptoms, social network support, meaning of life and life satisfaction were examined through a Structured Equation Modelling approach.

Background.  Older people’s pursuit of gerotranscendence is believed to facilitate successful ageing and late-life growth. Although a few Scandinavian studies have identified the relationship between psychosocial factors and the development of gerotranscendence, there is little trans-cultural study of the model, which limits the ability of the gerotranscendence theory to be applied worldwide.

Methods.  Cognitively intact older residents (= 195) from six long-term care facilities in southern Taiwan participated in a structured interview using the Gerotranscendence scale, Barthel’s Index, the Geriatric Depression Scale short form, the Inventory of Socially supportive Behaviour, the Life Meaning scale, and the Life Satisfaction scale. Data were collected over a 6-month period in 2008.

Results.  The model-fit indexes of the final model (χ2 = 32·08, d.f. = 14, P = 0·004; CMIN/d.f. = 2·29; GFI = 0·97, AGFI = 0·89, TLI = 0·94, NFI = 0·96) exceeded acceptable levels except for χ2. In the final model, social support, life satisfaction and meaning of life had direct effects on gerotranscendence (standardized regression weight 0·54, 0·43, and 0·76).

Conclusion.  The gerotranscendence model of healthy ageing is congruent in the Taiwanese population. Findings of this study can guide nursing and other health professionals in planning implementation of best practice in older people’s care.