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Health Place ; 76: 102813, 2022 07.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1907057


The role of parks and nature to support well-being during the COVID-19 pandemic is uncertain. To examine this topic, we used mixed-methods data collected in April-May 2020 from US adults aged ≥55 in the COVID-19 Coping Study. We quantitatively evaluated the associations between number of neighborhood parks and depression, anxiety, and loneliness; and conducted qualitative thematic analysis of participants' outdoor experiences. Among urban residents, depression and anxiety were inversely associated with the number of neighborhood parks. Thematic analysis identified diverse engagement in greenspaces that boosted physical, mental, and social well-being. The therapeutic potential of outdoor and greenspaces should be considered for interventions during future epidemics.

COVID-19 , Aged , COVID-19/epidemiology , Humans , Loneliness/psychology , Mental Health , Pandemics , Parks, Recreational , Residence Characteristics
Medical Sciences Forum ; 4(1):34, 2021.
Article in English | MDPI | ID: covidwho-1809772


Therapeutic engagement with nature can support health and wellbeing among older adults. This may be particularly important to cope with adversities of the COVID-19 pandemic when public health measures have been particularly stringent for individuals in this age group. Utilizing therapeutic landscapes as a conceptual framework, we conducted a secondary thematic analysis of qualitative data to explore older adults' everyday experiences (n = 769) with outdoor spaces and nature during the early months of the COVID-19 pandemic in the US. The data analyzed is part of the COVID-19 Coping Study baseline survey collected online between April and May 2020. Preliminary findings indicate that participants purposefully engaged with nature and outdoor spaces in diverse ways. This engagement provided opportunities for exercising and maintaining a routine at a safe physical distance from others, which promoted their physical, mental, and social well-being.

Int J Environ Res Public Health ; 19(7)2022 03 29.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1785636


Research suggests a disparity in the prevalence of dementia, with Black older adults having double the risk compared to their White counterparts. African immigrants are a fast-growing segment of the U.S. Black population, but the dementia care needs and resources of this population are not fully understood. In this paper, we describe the process of working collaboratively with a community partner and project advisory board to conduct a culturally informed project. Specifically, we describe the process of developing culturally informed instruments to collect data on dementia care needs and resources among African immigrants. Working together with a diverse project advisory board, a guide was developed and used to conduct community conversations about experiences with dementia/memory loss. Transcripts from six conversations with 24 total participants were transcribed and analyzed thematically by two independent coders in Nvivo. These qualitative findings were used to inform the development of a survey for quantitative data collection that is currently ongoing. Themes (e.g., cultural attitudes, challenges, and current resources) from the community conversations that informed the survey are described briefly. Despite the challenges of conducting research during a global pandemic, having trusting relationships with a partnering community organization and project advisory board facilitated the successful development of instruments to conduct preliminary dementia care research in an underserved population. We anticipate that survey results will inform interventions that increase education, outreach, and access to dementia care and caregiving resources for this population. It may serve as a model for community-university partnerships for similar public health efforts in dementia as well as other chronic disease contexts.

Dementia , Emigrants and Immigrants , Aged , Dementia/epidemiology , Humans , Universities , Vulnerable Populations