Prioritizing Health Care and Employment Resources During COVID-19: Roles of Benevolent and Hostile Ageism. By: Apriceno, MaryBeth; Lytle, Ashley; Monahan, Caitlin; Macdonald, Jamie; Levy, Sheri R. Gerontologist. Feb2021, Vol. 61 Issue 1, p98-102. 5p.

Background and Objectives: Benevolent and hostile ageism are subtypes of ageism that characterize older adults as incompetent. With benevolent ageism, older adults are also viewed as warm. The coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic has strained resources and prompted debates about priority for older adults versus other groups.

Research Design and Methods: College students completed an online survey of how much priority should be given to older adults in 3 relevant health care-related scenarios and 3 relevant employment scenarios.

Results: Benevolent ageism significantly predicted higher priority for older adults to receive health care (triage, COVID-19 vaccine, and COVID-19 testing) and employment resources (retention of job and working from home) while greater endorsement of hostile ageism significantly predicted lower priority ratings.

Discussion and Implications: These findings replicate and extend past work. As the COVID-19 pandemic continues to wreak havoc on health care and employment resources, this study sheds light on one factor-benevolent and hostile ageism-that contributes to a greater understanding of prioritization views toward a vulnerable segment of the population.