Impact of COVID-19 Pandemic on Elderly People: A study of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, Pakistan


  • Hamid Alam Department of Sociology, University of Malakand, Chakdara, Pakistan
  • Adnan Khan Department of Sociology, University of Malakand


COVID-19, Senior Citizens, Mortality, Lockdowns, Psychological impact


The COVID-19 pandemic and the subsequent lockdowns adversely affected every sphere of the life throughout the world. The negative impacts of COVID-19 affected all age groups, including senior citizens. The pandemic and the lockdown brought severe psychological, social, cultural and economic impacts on the lives of elderly people. This study aims to know about the economic and psychological impact of COVID-19 on senior citizens. The nature of the study is qualitative. For the study, 20 respondents were selected through purposive sampling technique from the village Rehankot, Dir Lower, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, Pakistan. Data has been collected through in-depth interviews and then analyzed through the technique of thematic analysis. The results show that the COVID-19 pandemic and lockdowns brought negative psychological and economic impacts on senior citizens in the form of anxiety, depression, poverty.


Age UK. (2020). The impact of COVID-19 to date on older people’s mental and physical health. Available online at [Accessed on 25 April, 2020].

Ahmed MZ, Ahmed O, Aibao Z, Hanbin S, Siyu L, Ahmad A. (2020). Epidemic of COVID-19 in China and associated psychological problems. Asian J. Psychiatr. 51: 102092 doi: 10.1016/j.ajp.2020.102092.

Aljazeera (2020). Iran: Over 700 dead after drinking alcohol to cure corona virus. Available online at [ accessed on 9 May, 2021).

Arif, U., & Ahmed, E. (2010). Pension System Reforms for Pakistan: Current Situation and Future Prospects. Pakistan Institute of Development Economics, Islamabad.

Ashiq, U., & Asad, A. Z. (2017). The rising old age problem in Pakistan. Journal of the Research Society of Pakistan, 54(2), pp 325-333.

CDC. COVID-19 Provisional Counts - Weekly Updates by Select Demographic and Geographic Characteristics. National Center for Health Statistics (2020). Available online at: (accessed on December 26, 2020)

Gorman, M. (1999). Development and the Rights of Older People: The Ageing and Development Report: Poverty, Independence and the World's Older People. London: Earth scan Publications Ltd. pp.3-21.

Hollander JE, Carr BG. (2020). Virtually perfect? Telemedicine for COVID-19. N. Engl. J. Med. 382:1679–81. doi: 10.1056/NEJMp2003539

Junaidi, I. ( 2021). 180,000 Senior citizens registered for vaccination. Daily Dawn, March, 2, 2021. Available online at [Accessed on May 9, 2021].

Khan, A. A., Lodhi, F. S., Rabbani, U., Ahmed, Z., Abrar, S., Arshad, S., ... & Khan, M. I. (2021). Impact of Coronavirus Disease (COVID-19) Pandemic on Psychological Well-Being of the Pakistani General Population. Frontiers in Psychiatry, 11.

Khan, A., Khan, S., & Khan, M. (2016). Factors effecting life expectency in developed and developing countries of the world. International Journal of Yoga, Physiotherapy and Physical Education, 1(1) pp 04-06.

Krylova , O and Balayeva, A. (2020). REPORT, Impact study of COVID-19 on older people and caregivers in Azerbaijan. Available online at [Accessed on November 23, 2021]

Li, Y., & Mutchler, J. E. (2020). Older adults and the economic impact of the COVID-19 pandemic. Journal of Aging & Social Policy, 32(4-5), 477-487.

Martins Van Jaarsveld G. (2020). The Effects of COVID-19 Among the Elderly Population: A Case for Closing the Digital Divide. Frontiers in psychiatry, 11, 577427. Available online at [Accessed on May 12, 2021].

Meda N, Pardini S, Slongo I, Bodini L, Rigobello P, Visioli F, and Novara, C. (2020). COVID-19 and depressive symptoms in students before and during lock down. MedRxiv [Preprint]. doi: 10.1101/2020.04.27.20081695

Mehrotra A, Ray K, Brockmeyer DM, Barnett ML, and Bender JA. (2020). Rapidly converting to “virtual practices”: outpatient care in the era of COVID-19. NEJM Catalyst. 1:1–5.

Mukhtar, S. (2020). Psychological impact of COVID-19 on older adults. Curr Med Res Pract. July-August; 10(4): 201–202.

Pant, S and Subedi, M. (2020). Impact of COVID-19 on the elderly. Journal of Patan Academy of Health Sciences, 7(2):32-38.

Riessman, C. K. (2008). Narrative methods for the human sciences. Sage.

Shahid, Z., Kalayanamitra, R., McClafferty, B., Kepko, D., Ramgobin, D., Patel, R. & Jain, R. (2020). COVID-19‐19 and older adults: what we know. Journal of the American Geriatrics Society, 68(5), 926-929.

The Aga Khan University. (2021). Caring for the elderly during COVID-19 19. Available online at [Accessed on May 20, 2021].

United Nations. (2020). Policy Brief: The Impact of COVID-19 on older persons. Available online at [Accessed on March 25, 2021]

Vahia, I. V., Jeste, D. V., & Reynolds, C. F. (2020). Older Adults and the Mental Health Effects of COVID-19. JAMA, 324(22), 2253-2254.

Webster P. (2020). Virtual health care in the era of COVID-19. Lancet. 395:1180–81. doi: 10.1016/S0140-6736(20)30818-7

WHO (2020). Older people & COVID-19. Available online at [Accessed April 6, 2021.

WHO (n.d). Global-Pakistan. Available online at [Accessed on March 25, 2021].

World meter. (2020). Life Expectancy of the World Population. Available online at [Accessed on May, 10, 2020]

Zaidi, A., Stefanoni, S., & Khalil, H. (2019). Moving from the margins: promoting and protecting the rights of older person in Pakistan. British Council and Help Age

Zhou, X., Snoswell, C. L., Harding, L. E., Bambling, M., Edirippulige, S., Bai, X., & Smith, A. C. (2020). The role of telehealth in reducing the mental health burden from COVID-19. Telemedicine and e-Health, 26(4), 377-379.




How to Cite

Alam, H., & Khan, adnan. (2022). Impact of COVID-19 Pandemic on Elderly People: A study of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, Pakistan. Pakistan Journal of Applied Social Sciences, 13(1), 91–103. Retrieved from