Abstract and keywords
Abstract (English):
Despite a large body of research into loneliness, the evidence base for effective ways to deal with loneliness among older adults is limited. Up to half of all older people regularly feel lonely, which negatively affects their physical and mental health. In light of population aging, family dislocation, and the impact of COVID-19, it is vital that we build the evidence base based on older people's experiences, knowing what they want and why, and ensuring that public services and support are meaningful to them. Method: Three focus groups were conducted in Ireland with older people living in communities. Results: Loneliness is associated with loss of familiarity and community connection. Conclusions: Understanding loneliness later in life becomes more important as the population ages. As plans are developed to end COVID-19-related lockdowns, a mechanism is urgently needed to sustain positive change in communities that have a meaningful connection with older people.

loneliness, seniors, connection, community, COVID-19
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