Financial and Social Capitals of Elderly People in Thailand

  •  Amornrat Apinunmahakul    


The number of ageing population in Thailand has been increased rapidly. The country was ranked as the most aged economy in South-east Asia after Singapore. However, there exists a body of research that associates social connectedness with good health. It hence is the objective of this study to examine of whether the correlation holds for Thai elderly. Using the first round pilot survey on Health, Ageing and Retirement in Thailand (HART), the study found that being married and, the level of education of the respondent contribute positively significantly to the probability of reporting good physical and mental health. The more the elderly participate in social activities, the higher the probability of reporting good or very good health, in particular, the mental health. Social participations to good physical health is an income equivalence of a 5 percent increase in an individual non-labor income, whilst social participations to good mental health accounts to almost 14 percent increase in the total asset value. Participating in voluntary associations thus reduces heath inequalities among older people. The research findings hence advocate for the social involvement of elderly people as a part of the quality ageing policy and the community-based welfare policy.

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