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Australian Longitudinal Study of Ageing Datasets

dataset
posted on 02.11.2021, 02:21 authored by Mary LuszczMary Luszcz, Timothy WindsorTimothy Windsor, Penny Edwards, Julia ScottJulia Scott
The Australian Longitudinal Study of Ageing, which ran from 1992 to 2014, was devised to generate longitudinal data over multiple time points. Thirteen waves were carried out. Waves 1, 3, 6, 7, 9, 11 and 12 comprised of a full face-to-face ‘household’ interview and a clinical assessment. Waves 2, 4, 5, 8, 10, 13 consisted of shorter telephone household interviews.

The initial sample of the older old (70 and older) was randomly drawn from the database of the South Australian Electoral Roll. Persons in the older age groups as well as males were deliberately oversampled to compensate for the higher mortality that could be expected over the study period. In addition, spouses of primary respondents (aged 65 and over) and other household members aged 70 and over were asked to participate. 2087 participants were initially interviewed at Wave 1 in 1992. Over the years, attrition due to either death, ill health, moving out of scope, being uncontactable, or refusal has reduced the number of participants to 94 in 2014. Information covering the data, questionnaires and relevant details are openly available.

Items in the household interview schedule represent a comprehensive set of measures chosen for their reliability and validity in previous studies, sensitivity to change over time, and suitability for use in a study of elderly persons. The domains assessed included demography, health, depression, morbid conditions, hospitalisation, hearing and vision difficulties, cognition, gross mobility and physical performance, activities of daily living and instrumental activities of daily living, lifestyle activities, exercise education and income.

At the completion of the household interview, participants were left with self-administered questionnaires, which were mailed back in pre- paid envelopes or collected at the time of the clinical assessment. The domains covered by the questionnaires were dental health, sexual activity and psychological measures of self-esteem, morale and perceived control.

The individual clinical assessment objectively measured both physical and cognitive functioning. The physical examination included measures of blood pressure, anthropometry, visual acuity, audiometry and physical performance. The cognitive assessment included measures of memory, information processing efficiency, verbal ability and executive function. The clinical assessments were conducted by nurses who received special training in the standard administration of all psychological instruments and the anthropometric measures. In addition, fasting blood samples and urine specimens were collected on the morning following the clinical assessment at Wave 1, and blood samples were again taken at Wave 3.

Some data have been provided by secondary sources. Participant deaths have been systematically monitored through the government Registry of Births, Deaths and Marriages.

From Wave 7 onward, collateral data were gathered from the files of the Health Insurance Commission (HIC). Permission was sought for access to the Health Insurance Commission HIC for purposes of establishing use of medical care and services and expenditure. The information sought from the HIC database included: the number of medical care services, and for each service, the nature of the service, date, charge, and benefit; the number of PBS prescriptions, and for each prescription, the drug prescribed, number of repeats, date, charge, and benefit.

Funding

How Individual and Societal Resources Contribute to Ageing Well through the Fourth Age: The Australian Longitudinal Study of Ageing

Australian Research Council

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Resilient ageing and the oldest-old in the Australian longitudinal study of ageing

Australian Research Council

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The dynamics of spousal relationships in very late life: transitions, psychological health and longevity

Australian Research Council

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Day-to-day life of adults after age 85: the interplay of mood, engagement, cognition and health in the context of prior functioning

Australian Research Council

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Late life transitions and pathways to healthy ageing

National Health and Medical Research Council

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Antecedents and consequences of cognitive decline and depression in late life

National Health and Medical Research Council

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Predictors of cognitive performance in old age

National Health and Medical Research Council

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NIA AG08523 United States National Institute on Ageing

History

Primary contact

Prof Mary Luszcz, mary.luszcz@flinders.edu.au

Access Rights

Data owner: Flinders Centre for Ageing Studies For information about accessing this dataset, contact Prof Mary Luszcz

Migrated Content

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