Behavioral attitudes of the elderly towards social care services: the case of Beijing

WANG Yongmei1 DU Peng2,3

(1.School of Labor Economics, Capital University of Economics and Business)
(2.Population Development Studies Center, Renmin University of China, Beijing, China 100070)
(3.Institute of Gerontology, Renmin University of China, Beijing, China 100070)

【Abstract】The behavioral attitudes indicate a psychological tendency of an individual towards certain behaviors and can be used to predict actual behaviors. Under the theoretical framework of multi-dimensional human nature, this study examines how the behavioral attitudes of the elderly determine their utilization of social care service by analyzing the data from six districts in Beijing. Behavioral attitudes of older persons towards social care service for the elderly consist of eight dimensions: the pursuit of an economical and practical life, the security of living and commuting, the ethic disorder of the elder care, the pressure of family care, the pursuit of spiritual effects, the identification of the elder care services, the trust on the services, and the effect of mental accounting. The low-income groups show the highest level of acceptance of social care services but also the lowest level of trust. Most of the elderly (i.e. those with secondary schooling) pay much attention to the spiritual effects of the services, while they are conservative about ethical culture of the elder care. The contingency of behavioral attitudes leads to the deviation between the utilization of services and the behaviors intentions.

【Keywords】 social care services for the elderly; the elderly; behavioral attitude; actual behavior; behavioral intention;


【Funds】 Project of National Social Science Fund of China (18BRK007) Project of China Postdoctoral Science Foundation (17XNLG08)

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(Translated by ZHANG Lei)


    [1]. ① The six districts are Dongcheng District, Xicheng District, Chaoyang District, Fengtai District, Shijingshan District and Haidian District. [^Back]

    [2]. ② Institutions providing elderly care services include geracomium, asylum for the elderly or nursing homes; home-based elderly care services include daily care, meal-assistance service, home-based housework, bath-assistance service, daytime care, short-term care, home visits, rehabilitation care, health guidance, and chat or psychological counseling. In this study, the use of any one item of the above-mentioned services is regarded as the use of social care services for the elderly. [^Back]

    [3]. ① The values and connotations of 10 control variables run as follows: gender is a binary variable with 1 representing male and 2 denoting female; age is a continuous variable, with the value between 61 and 92 years old; self-care or not is a binary variable, with 1 representing self-care and 0 denoting not self-care; self-assessed health is a five-categorized ordinal variable—the higher the score is, the worse the health condition is; in marriage or not is a binary variable, with 1 representing in marriage and 0 denoting not in marriage; educational attainment is a five-categorized ordinal variable—the higher the score is, the higher the educational attainment is; the length of residence is a continuous variable with a value set between 1 and 8 years; the way of residence is an ordinal variable with 1 representing “an aged person living alone,” 2 denoting “empty nest families with aged couples” and 3 referring to “living with others”; the number of living children is a continuous variable with the value set between 0 and 7; and the income level is an eight-categorized ordinal variable—the higher the score is, the higher the monthly income level is. [^Back]


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This Article


CN: 11-1489/C

Vol 42, No. 06, Pages 74-86

November 2018


Article Outline


  • 1 Introduction
  • 2 Literature review and theoretical basis
  • 3 Questionnaire and data
  • 4 Behavioral attitudes of the elderly towards social care services
  • 5 Test for the influence of behavioral attitudes on the utilization of elderly care services
  • 6 Conclusion and reflection
  • Footnote