Naima Nawaz
Department of Rural Sociology,, University of Agriculture, Faisalabad
September, 2013


Aging’ previously regarded as an emerging problem of the industrialized countries is now recognized as a global phenomenon. Currently, more than half of the world’s women aged 60 years and over are living in developing regions, i.e. 198 million compared with 135 million in the developed regions. Aging being an important global phenomenon has attracted the attention of sociologists who are looking into the socioeconomic and cultural antecedents of the process of ageing. The present study was planned to be conducted in Punjab province of Pakistan. Multistage Random Sampling Technique was used. According to this technique, sampling is done in two or more stages. At the first stage, from 36 districts of the ‘Punjab’ province, two districts were selected randomly. These were ‘Faisalabad’ and Rawalpindi’. At the second stage, out of eight towns, (of each district) two towns were randomly selected from each of the two districts, constituting a sampling of four towns. At the third Stage, two union councils (one rural and one urban) were randomly selected from each of the four above mentioned towns to constitute a sample of eight union councils. The desired sample of 500 respondents was to be divided on two districts of the ‘Punjab’ province. Both quantitative and qualitative methods (focus group) were used to collect data. Information on selected demographic and socio-cultural variables i.e. age, education, income, housing/living arrangements, nutritional status, social support and social network of the elderly women was collected through well organized interview schedule. Influence of these independent variables was observed on the ‘health status’ of elderly women (social, mental/ psychological and physical health status).Both independent and dependent variables were measured by operational zing and constructing the indexation. Analysis of data was made on the basis of uni-variate, bi-variate and multivariate analysis. Findings of uni-variate analysis: Mean age of the women was 69.4, around 35.0 percent were ‘widows’, 94.8 percent were living with their married/unmarried children. Only 13.4 percent of the elderly women and 26.6 percent of their husbands were literate. Only 3.4 percent of respondents were involved in some type of economic activity. The mean no. of children was around 5 children. Findings of bi-variate analysis: Statistical test indicated that the age of the elderly women was inversely related with the health status. However education, income, housing / living arrangements, nutritional status, social support and social network of the elderly women was positively associated with their health status. Findings of multivariate analysis: Results of ordinal regression analysis also showed that family income, housing/living arrangements, nutritional status, social support and social network had highly significant influence on the health status of the elderly women. Study suggests that the policy makers as well as health providers need to focus on the health and well-being of the older population, particularly in the context of poverty, low levels of education, nutrition and poor health system.