Living Environment Matters: Relationships Between Neighborhood Characteristics and Health of the Residents in a Dutch Municipality
OBJECTIVES Following the socio-structural framework of health, the study examined the role of social/interpersonal and environmental/neighborhood factors in predicting self-rated mental health (SRMH) in Korean American older adults. METHOD Using the survey data from 420 older Korean Americans (mean age = 71.6, SD = 7.59), multivariate models of SRMH was estimated with sets of predictors: (1) background information (demographic characteristics and chronic conditions), (2) mental health symptom measures (depressive symptoms and anxiety), (3) social/interpersonal factors (social network and filial satisfaction), and (4) environmental/neighborhood factors (neighborhood safety and residential satisfaction). RESULTS Social/interpersonal and environmental/neighborhood factors were found to make a significant contribution to the predictive model even after controlling for background information and mental health symptom measures. Those with higher levels of filial satisfaction and more favorable perceptions of neighborhood safety were likely to have positive ratings of SRMH. CONCLUSION Findings supported the importance of considering socio-structural contexts in the assessment of SRMH and provided implications for mental health services for the target population.