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Krause, Neal. 2010. "Close Companions at Church, Health, and Health Care Use in Late Life." Journal of Aging and Health, 22(4): 434-453.
Objective: This article studies whether there are age variations in the relationships between having a close companion friend at church, health, and outpatient physician visits. Method: The data come from two waves of interviews in a nationwide survey of older adults. These data are analyzed with ordinary least squares multiple regression analyses. Results: The findings reveal that older people who have a close companion friend in the place where they worship are more likely to rate their health in a favorable way over time. However, these health-related benefits emerge only among the oldest-old study participants. The data results further indicate that having a close friend at church is associated with fewer outpatient physician visits over time, but once again, the results are observed only among the oldest old. Discussion: The results from this study provide preliminary insight into one way in which spiraling health care costs may eventually be curtailed.
PMCID: PMC2866809. (Pub Med Central)
Country of focus: United States.