Understanding elder abuse : fact sheet, 2016
Corporate Authors:National Center for Injury Prevention and Control (U.S.). Division of Violence Prevention.
Description:Why is elder abuse a public health problem? -- How does elder abuse affect health? -- Who is at risk for elder abuse? -- How can we prevent elder abuse? -- How does CDC approach elder abuse prevention? -- Where can I learn more? – References.
Elder abuse is an intentional act or failure to act that causes or creates a risk of harm to an older adult. An older adult is someone age 60 or older. The abuse occurs at the hands of a caregiver or a person the elder trusts. Six frequently recognized types of elder abuse include:
• Physical—This occurs when an elder experiences illness, pain, or injury as a result of the intentional use of physical force and includes acts such as hitting, kicking, pushing, slapping, and burning.
• Sexual—This involves forced or unwanted sexual interaction of any kind with an older adult. This may include unwanted sexual contact or penetration or non-contact acts such as sexual harassment.
• Emotional or Psychological—This refers to verbal or nonverbal behaviors that that inflict anguish, mental pain, fear, or distress on an older adult. Examples include name calling, humiliating, destroying property, or not letting the older adult see friends and family.
• Neglect—This is the failure to meet an older adult’s basic needs. These needs include food, water, shelter, clothing, hygiene, and essential medical care.
• Financial—This is illegally or improperly using an elder’s money, benefits, belongings, property, or assets for the benefit of someone other than the older adult. Examples include taking money from an older adult’s account without proper authority, unauthorized credit card use, and changing a will without permission.
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