Solutions to the Challenge of Meeting Rural Transportation Needs: Middle-Aged and Older Adults’ Perspectives

Moon Choi, Amy M. Schuster, Nancy E. Schoenberg

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Scopus citations

Abstract

This study aimed to explore how the aging population in Appalachia manages its transportation and plans for the transition to non-driving and to seek possible solutions to the challenge of meeting rural transportation needs. Four focus groups (N = 38) were conducted, supplemented by a questionnaire, in Appalachian Kentucky. The results showed that few alternative transportation existed except a local paratransit service and informal transportation support. Compared to older adults, middle-aged adults reported a greater willingness to use mobile phones and the Internet to arrange transportation if they were available. Participants also recommended expanding the use of existing transportation in the community–such as church vans–to better meet the aging population’s needs. The findings suggest that partnership between government, non-profit, and private sectors is needed, not solely focusing on a tax-dependent solution. Additionally, information and communication technology-based transportation management system would help maximize the use of scare but existing resources in rural areas.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)415-431
Number of pages17
JournalJournal of Gerontological Social Work
Volume62
Issue number4
DOIs
StatePublished - May 19 2019

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
We acknowledge the assistance of Ms. Katie Dollarhide and Sherry Wright in arranging the focus groups. This study was supported in part by the Research Support Grant from the University of Kentucky Office of the Vice President for Research. M. Choi was also supported by the Basic Faculty Research Fund from Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology (KAIST) as well as the National Research Foundation of Korea Grant funded by the Korean Government (NRF-2016S1A3A2925399). The content is solely the responsibility of the authors and does not necessarily represent the official views of the University of Kentucky, KAIST or National Research Foundation of Korea. A preliminary version of this work was presented at the 19th Annual Conference of the Society for Social Work and Research, New Orleans, LA in January 2015 as well as the 8th International Association of Gerontology and Geriatrics European Region Congress in Dublin, Ireland in April 2015.

Funding Information:
This work was supported by the University of Kentucky Office of the Vice President for Research; Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology (KAIST); National Research Foundation of Korea [NRF-2016S1A3A2925399].

Publisher Copyright:
© 2019, © 2019 Taylor & Francis Group, LLC.

Keywords

  • Automobile driving
  • baby boomers
  • mobile technology
  • rural areas
  • senior transportation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Social Sciences (miscellaneous)
  • Nursing (miscellaneous)

Fingerprint

Dive into the research topics of 'Solutions to the Challenge of Meeting Rural Transportation Needs: Middle-Aged and Older Adults’ Perspectives'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this