Older people’s long-term care experiences during the COVID-19 pandemic in Ghana: a qualitative descriptive study

View author details View Less
  • 1 African Health and Ageing Research Centre (AHaARC), Ghana
  • | 2 University of Education, Ghana
  • | 3 African Health and Ageing Research Centre (AHaARC) and University of Ghana, Ghana
Restricted access
Get eTOC alerts
Rights and permissions Cite this article

This study explores older people’s long-term care experiences during the COVID-19 pandemic in Ghana. A qualitative descriptive approach employing semi-structured interviews was used to collect data from 15 older people from Southern Ghana. Analysis of interview data resulted in five interrelated themes: (1) sources and type of long-term care; (2) older people’s satisfaction with the long-term care received; (3) changes in their long-term care; (4) feelings of neglect regarding long-term care; and (5) older people’s resilience in long-term care. The sustainability of long-term care depends on the state’s ability to devise innovative long-term care policies and programmes to promote older people’s and their carers’ well-being.

  • Apt, N.A. (2012) Aging in Africa: past experiences and strategic directions, Ageing International, 37(1): 93103. doi: 10.1007/s12126-011-9138-8

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Arkorful, G. (2015) Sources of Support and Challenges for the Elderly in Teshie Township, Legon-Accra: University of Ghana.

  • Awuviry-Newton, K., Byles, J. and Tavener, M. (2017) Evolution of Familial Care and Support for Older People in Ghana: A Literature Review, paper presented at the Maintaining a Work Life Balance as a Researcher conference, Western Australia, Emerging Researchers in Ageing.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Awuviry-Newton, K., Nkansah, J.O. and Ofori-Dua, K. (2020a) Attributions of elder neglect: a phenomenological study of older people in Ghana, Health & Social Care in the Community, 28(6): 21728.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Awuviry-Newton, K., Ofori-Dua, K. and Newton, A. (2020b) Correlates of older adult inpatients’ personal care provision to people with functional difficulties in Ghana, PloS One, 15(10): e0238693.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Awuviry-Newton, K., Tavener, M., Wales, K. and Byles, J. (2020c) Interpretative phenomenological analysis of the lived experiences of older adults regarding their functional activities in Ghana, Journal of Primary Care & Community Health, 11: 1–12. doi: 10.1177/2150132720931110.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Awuviry-Newton, K., Wales, K., Tavener, M. and Byles, J. (2020d) Do factors across the World Health Organisation’s international classification of functioning, disability and health framework relate to caregiver availability for community-dwelling older adults in Ghana?, PloS One, 15(5): e0233541.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Awuviry-Newton, K., Ofori-Dua, K. and Newton, A. (2021a) Understanding transportation difficulty among older adults in Ghana from the perspective of World Health Organisation’s healthy ageing framework: lessons for improving social work practice with older adults, The British Journal of Social Work, 00: 121. doi: 10.1093/bjsw/bcaa247

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Awuviry-Newton, K., Tavener, M., Wales, K., Denham, A.M. and Byles, J. (2021b) A meta-synthesis of care and support for older adults in Africa, Journal of Family Studies, 122. doi: 10.1080/13229400.2021.1897031

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Awuviry-Newton, K., Wales, K., Tavener, M., Kowal, P. and Byles, J. (2021c) Functional difficulties and toileting among older adults in Ghana: evidence from the World Health Organization study on global AGEing and adult health (SAGE) Ghana wave 1, Ageing & Society, 123.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Braun, V. and Clarke, V. (2006) Using thematic analysis in psychology, Qualitative Research in Psychology, 3(2): 77101. doi: 10.1191/1478088706qp063oa

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Charmaz, K. (2014) Constructing Grounded Theory, New York, NY: Sage.

  • Dovie, D.A. (2019) The status of older adult care in contemporary Ghana: a profile of some emerging issues, Frontiers in Sociology, 4: 25. doi: 10.3389/fsoc.2019.00025

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Draucker, C.B., Martsolf, D.S. and Poole, C. (2009) Developing distress protocols for research on sensitive topics, Archives of Psychiatric Nursing, 23(5): 34350. doi: 10.1016/j.apnu.2008.10.008

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Ghana Statistical Service (2013) Population and housing census report, https://statsghana.gov.gh/gssmain/fileUpload/pressrelease/2010_PHC_National_Analytical_Report.pdf.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • GhanaWeb (2020) Ghana’s elderly cry over neglect amid coronavirus pandemic, www.ghanaweb.com/GhanaHomePage/NewsArchive/Ghana-s-elderly-cry-over-neglect-amid-coronavirus-pandemic-916180.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Government of Ghana (2003) National Health Insurance Scheme (NHIS), ministry of gender, children and social protection and ministry of health, http://mogcsp.gov.gh/projects/ghana-national-household-registry-gnhr/.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Government of Ghana (2007) The National Social Protection Strategy: Investing in People, Accra.

  • Government of Ghana (2010) National Ageing Policy: Ageing with Security and Dignity, Accra: https://www.mogcsp.gov.gh/mdocs-​posts/national-​ageing-​policy-​ageing-​with-​security-​and-​dignity/.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Holloway, I. and Todres, L. (2003) The status of method: flexibility, consistency and coherence, Qualitative Research, 3(3): 34557. doi: 10.1177/1468794103033004

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Jiang, L., Drolet, A. and Kim, H.S. (2018) Age and social support seeking: understanding the role of perceived social costs to others, Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin, 44(7): 110416. doi: 10.1177/0146167218760798

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Korstjens, I. and Moser, A. (2018) Series: practical guidance to qualitative research. Part 4: trustworthiness and publishing, European Journal of General Practice, 24(1): 1204. doi: 10.1080/13814788.2017.1375092

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Kpessa-Whyte, M. and Tsekpo, K. (2020) Lived experiences of the elderly in Ghana: analysis of ageing policies and options for reform, Journal of Cross-Cultural Gerontology, 35(2): 34152.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Lincoln, Y.S. and Guba, E.G. (1986) But is it rigorous? Trustworthiness and authenticity in naturalistic evaluation, New Directions for Program Evaluation, 1986(30): 7384. doi: 10.1002/ev.1427

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Lloyd-Sherlock, P., Ebrahim, S., Geffen, L. and McKee, M. (2020) Bearing the brunt of COVID-19: older people in low and middle income countries, British Medical Journal, 368:m1052

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Mackenzie, E.R., Rajagopal, D.E., Meilbohm, M. and Lavizzo-Mourey, R. (2000). Spiritual support and psychological well-being: older adults’ perceptions of the religion and health connection, Alternative Therapies in Health and Medicine, 6(6): 37.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Nkansah, O.J., Awuviry-Newton, K., Gyasi, M., Newton, A. and Boateng, A.S.A. (2021) ‘Who doesn’t have challenges? I have a lot of challenges’: exploring the challenges and coping strategies of neglected older adults in Ghana, Journal of Cross-Cultural Gerontology, 36(1): 91104. doi: 10.1007/s10823-020-09419-3.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Nocon, A. and Pearson, M. (2000) The roles of friends and neighbours in providing support for older people, Ageing & Society, 20(3): 34167. doi: 10.1017/S0144686X99007771

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Nortey, S.T., Aryeetey, G.C., Aikins, M., Amendah, D. and Nonvignon, J. (2017) Economic burden of family caregiving for elderly population in Southern Ghana: the case of a peri-urban district, International Journal for Equity in Health, 16(1): 16. doi: 10.1186/s12939-016-0511-9

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Ofori-Dua, K. (2014) Extended Family Support and Elderly Care in Bamang, Ashanti Region of Ghana, PhD thesis, Ghana: University of Ghana.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Polit, D.F. and Beck, C.T. (2009) Essentials of Nursing Research: Appraising Evidence for Nursing Practice, Philadelphia, PA: Lippincott Williams & Wilkins.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Saldaña, J. (2015) The Coding Manual for Qualitative Researchers, New York, NY: Sage.

  • Sandelowski, M. (2010) What’s in a name? Qualitative description revisited, Research in Nursing & Health, 33(1): 7784.

  • Sanuade, O.A. and Boatemaa, S. (2015) Caregiver profiles and determinants of caregiving burden in Ghana, Public Health, 129(7): 9417. doi: 10.1016/j.puhe.2015.05.016

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • United Nations (2017) World population prospects: the 2017 revision volume I: comprehensive tables, New York, NY: https://www.un.org/development/desa/pd/content/world-population-prospects-2017-revision-volume-i-comprehensive-tables

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • United Nations (2019) World population prospects 2019, population division, department of economic and social affairs, https://population.un.org/wpp/

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Vahia, I.V., Blazer, D.G., Smith, G.S., Karp, J.F., Steffens, D.C., Forester, B.P., Tampi, R., Agronin, M., Jeste, D.V. and Reynolds, C.F. (2020) COVID-19, mental health and aging: a need for new knowledge to bridge science and service, The American Journal of Geriatric Psychiatry, 28(7): 6957. doi: 10.1016/j.jagp.2020.03.007

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Van der Geest, S. (1997) Money and respect: the changing value of old age in rural Ghana, Africa, 67(4): 53459.

  • Van der Geest, S. (2002) Respect and reciprocity: care of elderly people in rural Ghana, Cross-Cultural Gerontology, 17(1): 331. doi: 10.1023/A:1014843004627

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Van der Geest, S. (2016) Will families in Ghana continue to care for older people? Logic and contradiction in policy, in J. Hoffman and K. Pype (eds) Ageing in Sub-Saharan Africa: Spaces and Practices of Care, London: Policy Press, pp 2141.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • World Health Organization (2017) Towards Long-term Care Systems in Sub-Saharan Africa: WHO Series on Long-term Care, Geneva: https://www.who.int/ageing/long-term-care/en/.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Worldometer (2020) COVID-19 coronavirus pandemic, www.worldometers.info/coronavirus/.

  • Yip, P.S., Cheung, Y., Chau, P.H. and Law, Y. (2010) The impact of epidemic outbreak: the case of severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS) and suicide among older adults in Hong Kong, Crisis: The Journal of Crisis Intervention and Suicide Prevention, 31(2): 86. doi: 10.1027/0227-5910/a000015

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • 1 African Health and Ageing Research Centre (AHaARC), Ghana
  • | 2 University of Education, Ghana
  • | 3 African Health and Ageing Research Centre (AHaARC) and University of Ghana, Ghana

Content Metrics

May 2022 onwards Past Year Past 30 Days
Abstract Views 8 8 8
Full Text Views 1 1 1
PDF Downloads 1 1 1

Altmetrics

Dimensions