This study aims to confirm the relationship between social support and health-related quality of life (HRQOL) among rural Chinese elders in nursing homes, and to examine the mediating role of resilience in the impact of social support on HRQOL.
A cross-sectional survey of 205 elders aged 60 and above was conducted in five rural public nursing homes. Sociodemographic characteristics, the SF-36 questionnaire, and information about social support and resilience were collected. The researchers administered the questionnaires to the participants in a face-to-face setting. Descriptive analysis and a correlation matrix were used to indicate characteristics of the participants and bivariate correlations, respectively. The mediation analyses, composed of regression analysis and PROCESS analysis, were preformed to test both direct and indirect effects of social support on HRQOL, namely the mediating role of resilience.
Social support was positively related to HRQOL (β = 0.303, p < 0.001) among Chinese rural elders in nursing homes. The mediating role of resilience in the relationship between social support and HRQOL was confirmed (a*b bootstrapped 95% confidence interval = [0.098, 0.257]), which revealed that social support had an indirect effect on HRQOL through resilience.
Resilience partially mediates the relationship between social support and HRQOL. The mediation model provides a better understanding of how social support and resilience work together to affect HRQOL, and it could guide the interventions in health care for promoting HRQOL among Chinese rural elders in nursing homes.