PURPOSE: The main objective of this study was to determine the relationship between quality of life, social functioning, depressive symptoms, self-efficacy, physical function, and socioeconomic status (SES) in community-dwelling older adults.
METHODS: A cross-sectional design was used to examine the relationships. A sample of 193 community-dwelling older adults completed the measurements. Structural equation modeling with full information maximum likelihood in LISREL was used to evaluate the relationships between the latent variables (SES, social functioning, depressive symptoms, self-efficacy, physical function, and quality of life).
RESULTS: The path analysis exhibited significant effects of SES on physical function, social functioning, depressive symptoms, and self-efficacy (γ = 0.42-0.73), and significant effects in regard to social functioning, depressive symptoms, and self-efficacy on quality of life (γ = 0.27-0.61). There was no direct effect of SES on the quality of life. The model fit indices demonstrated a reasonable fit (χ (2) = 98.3, df = 48, p < 0.001), matching the relative Chi-square criterion and the RMSEA criterion. The model explained 55.5 % of the variance of quality of life.
CONCLUSIONS: The path analysis indicated an indirect effect of SES on the quality of life by social functioning, depressive symptoms, and self-efficacy in community-dwelling older adults. Physical function did not have a direct effect on the quality of life. To improve the quality of life in older adults, additional focus is required on the socioeconomic psychosocial differences in the community-dwelling older population.