Subjective evaluation of health in old age: The role of immigration status and social environment

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

25 Scopus citations


The study investigated the role of immigration status on self-rated health, general health, and well-being among elderly persons by comparing two groups of elderly persons who immigrated from Eastern European countries to Israel-veterans and new immigrants. It also examined the factors that explain self-rated health in both groups. Data for this study (n = 784) were taken from a study based on structured home interviews of a random sample of Israeli Jewish elderly (70+) conducted in 1994. The results show that the new immigrants are younger and have higher education than the veterans, but their economic status is lower and they have a lower percentage of men and married persons. The new immigrants also rank themselves lower than the veterans on a variety of measures of health and psycho-social well-being. It is suggested that the stress caused by immigration and factors related to the standard of living and health services in the countries of origin outweigh the relative advantage that the new immigrants have, in terms of age and education, in influencing their health and well-being. Self-rated health among the new immigrants is explained mainly by objective measures of health, economic status and a feeling of control over life, while among the veterans it is explained by these variables as well as by other psycho-social variables such as self-esteem and social support. These findings suggest careful analyses of subjective evaluations of health in different socio-cultural subgroups in society for theoretical reasons and for purposes of planning interventions directed to promote health and psycho-social well-being of elderly persons on the community level.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)91-105
Number of pages15
JournalInternational Journal of Aging and Human Development
Issue number2
StatePublished - 27 Nov 2001


Dive into the research topics of 'Subjective evaluation of health in old age: The role of immigration status and social environment'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this