Accessibility and usability of mobile homes for the elderly

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1983
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Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University
Abstract

It was the purpose of this study to determine the accessibility and usability of mobile homes for elderly residents. A sample of 50 elderly persons was interviewed with an instrument developed by researchers at Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University who conducted the project entitled "Mobile Homes Accessibility and Usability for Independent Elderly Residents."

The majority of elderly persons in the sample were females who lived alone, more of whom had mobility problems than health problems. The residents had lived in the mobile home an average of six years and the majority owned rather than rented. The mobile homes were a median size of 720 square feet and an average age of 11.5 years. Of the 95 accessibility and usability features considered, an average of 46 features were present at the time of purchase or when the units were first occupied, and an average of seven features had been added by the residents.

Linear regression, t-test, analysis of covariance and Pearson Product Moment Correlation tests were used to examine the relationships between features present, added and total in the units and the independent variables. Health problems were significantly and negatively related to the number of features present at purchase in the mobile homes. Mobility problems of the residents were significantly and positively related to the total number of features in the mobile homes. Larger and newer mobile homes were found to have a greater number of total features.

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