QUALITY OF LIFE AMONG THAI OLDER PERSONS:A SITUATIONAL ANALYSIS OF CHAI NAT PROVINCE IN CENTRAL REGION OF THAILAND
The ultimate goal of strategic plan in Chai Nat Province is to improve quality of life among Thai older persons. Chai Nat Province as agriculture community is approaching aged society before other provinces in Thailand. The increasing number of aging population is very challenging for Thai government and its alliance to enhance the life quality of this population and the sustainable development of the country. The objective of this descriptive research was to study quality of life among Thai older persons in Chai Nat Province, central region of Thailand. The samples comprised of 628 Thai older persons who were randomly selected from all 8 districts area of Chai Nat province using multi-stage sampling method. Data were collected using demographic data form and the World Health Organization Quality of Life Scale for Thai versions (WHOQOL-BREF-THAI). Percentage, mean, standard deviation, independence t-test and F-test were used for data analysis.
The results of the study revealed that the overall quality of life among Thai older persons in Chai Nat Province was at moderate level ( X = 93.72, S.D. = 13.92). Regarding the dimension of quality of life, physical, psychological, and social relation were at moderate level ( X = 24.57, 21.55, 10.63, S.D. = 3.86, 3.52, 2.30 respectively). Whereas the environmental dimension was at high level ( X = 29.67, S.D. = 4.95). When comparing the quality of life by age (early age, middle age, old age), gender, educational level (non-educated and educated), income (sufficiency and insufficiency) and living area (urban, seri-rual, rural), it was found that the overall quality of life of Thai older persons were significantly different by age and living areas. Thai older persons living in semi-rural community had higher level of quality of life than those living in urban and rural community. However, the quality of life of Thai older persons was not significantly different by gender, educational level (non-educated and educated), income (sufficiency and insufficiency).
The results of this study suggested that the quality of life among Thai older persons, especially the dimension of physical, psychological, and social relation should be enhanced. The older persons who lived in rural and urban community should be priority for quality of life improvement implementation.