Study on feminization of care facilities for older people

Research Project , Research Report 2007

Hiroko AKIYAMA Program of Gerontological Research, Organization for Interdisciplinary Research, Univ. of Tokyo,
Ikuko SUGAWARA  Program of Gerontological Research, Organization for Interdisciplinary Research, Univ. of Tokyo,

Abstract

Improvement of the living environment for old-olds is an urgent task as we face the rapid growth of the population of old-olds. Social services for older people have been often tailored for women, who are the majority of the old-olds. This ‘feminization’ of the services may lower male users’ satisfaction with such services. Observation in four daycare facilities and interviews with 5 staff members and 18 users were conducted to investigate the possible gender segregation of care for the elderly. Examination of gender differences in the users’ attitude and satisfaction with 1) physical environment, 2) service programs/contents, and 3)social environment suggested male users’ passive attitude toward the care compared to female user’s more active and positive attitude. Development of services which promote male user’s active engagement is needed.

Keywords:

Care facilities for the elderly, Gender difference, Qualitative Social Research