Elfriede Derrer-Merk:
Individual Experiences of Older Adults During the Pandemic

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COVID-19 shook the world in 2020. Older people were especially impacted with higher morbidity, mortality plus advice to stay at home. The present qualitative studies explore how people in The United Kingdom and Colombia aged 65/60 and over experienced the COVID-19 pandemic. The ongoing analysis of the data has highlighted the importance of family relationships and how the pandemic had fostered ageism. Both studies highlighted the challenges older adults face in the time of the pandemic. The first finding suggests that the COVID-19 pandemic brought family relationships in disequilibrium and the second finding, in a cross-cultural study, highlights how the pandemic had fostered ageism.

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Elfriede Derrer-Merk, MS in gerontology, is a cross-faculty PhD (Institute of Risk and uncertainty and department of psychology) student at the University of Liverpool. She is an expert in geriatric nursing and has taught for many years at nursing schools in Germany. In addition, she is experienced in publishing nursing exam books and flashcards in collaboration with Elsevier, Germany. Her research interest focuses on the psychological experiences of older adults and risk communication from a qualitative perspective. The major aspects are family relationships, ageism, belonging, and resilience under the aspect of the COVID-19 pandemic.