53% of older people surveyed said that the pandemic had left them feeling more lonely.
Age Scotland have published the results of their Big Survey (this link will take you away from our website), which aimed to capture older people’s experiences and research how COVID-19 has impacted their lives. In addition to direct pandemic impacts, it also investigated daily issues including housing, health, and finances.
The survey found that in addition to the 15% of respondents who had been asked to shield during lockdowns, a further 46% had made the decision to limit their interactions with other people. Over two-thirds (68%) of respondents said access to friends and family had been an issue during the pandemic, resulting in 53% saying the pandemic had increased their feelings of loneliness. Lockdown also increased financial pressure on many older people as two-thirds reported higher energy bills, and 13% of those people said they had struggled with the increase.
Amongst the other findings from the survey were:
- A third (34%) of older people felt their mental health had gotten worse in the past 5 years.
- A quarter (24%) had a caring role for someone in their family, of which 54% lived with the person they cared for.
- Half (51%) did not feel older people or their contributions were valued by society.
- Almost all (89%) had access to the internet at home.