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Title: Rural-urban migration and depression in ageing family members left behind
Authors: Melanie A. Abas
Sureeporn Punpuing
Tawanchai Jirapramukpitak
Philip Guest
Kanchana Tangchonlatip
Morven Leese
Martin Prince
King's College London
Mahidol University
Faculty of Medicine, Thammasat University
Keywords: Medicine
Issue Date: 1-Jul-2009
Citation: British Journal of Psychiatry. Vol.195, No.1 (2009), 54-60
Abstract: Background: It has been suggested that rural-urban migration will have adverse consequences for older parents left behind. Aims: To describe correlates of outmigration and to estimate any association between outmigration of children and depression in rural-dwelling older parents. Method: Population-based survey of 1147 parents aged 60 and over in rural Thailand. We randomly oversampled parents living without children. We defined an outmigrant child as living outside their parent's district, and measured depression as a continuous outcome with a Thai version of the EURO-D. Results: Outmigration of all children, compared with outmigration of some or no children, was independently associated with less depression in parents. This association remained after taking account of social support, parent characteristics, health and wealth. Parents with all children outmigrated received more economic remittances and they perceived support to be as good as that of those with children close by. Conclusions: Outmigration of children was not associated with greater depression in older parents and, after taking account of a range of possible covariables, was actually associated with less parental depression. This could be explained by pre-existing advantages in families sending more migrants and by the economic benefits of migration.
ISSN: 14721465
Appears in Collections:Scopus 2006-2010

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