Objective: Attitudes of medical faculty students toward ageism are an important issue in terms of public health. In Turkey, there is not enough study to attract attention to ageism. In this study, it was aimed to determine some factors related to the attitudes of the first and last year students of Erciyes University Faculty of Medicine toward the elderly in the 20172018 academic year.
Materials and Methods: In this cross-sectional study, the data of 468 (71.6%) students studying in the first and last years were analyzed. As a data collection tool, a sociodemographic questionnaire and Ageism Attitude Scale (AAS) were used. The dependent variable of the study was the attitude toward ageism, independent variables were age, gender, grade, economic situation, family structure, the condition of staying with the elderly before and currently, and willingness to care for the elderly.
Results: The average age of participants was 21.8±3.0 years, 51.0% were first grade and 51.5% were women. The total AAS score of the students was 84.9±8.8, the restricting the life of the elderly was 36.8±4.3, the positive ageism score was 30.3±5.0, and the negative ageism score was 17.8±3.0. The AAS total score and the restricting the life of the elderly score were significantly higher in women and last grade students (p<0.05).
Conclusion: To develop students attitudes toward the elderly in a positive way, elderly health and old age lessons should be included in the curriculum and students should be provided with spending time with the elderly.