Preferred Healthcare Registry is always listening to you in order to address topics that are timely and are important to you. We have made it a point to put together training materials that will keep you up to speed on important work place issues as well as help to meet the needs of continuing education requirements.
Elder Abuse is a topic that you might have seen in recent months as the State of California has made an attempt to educate the public on the reality of elder abuse through public service campaigns across the state. Here are some important points from our latest therapist and client training piece. Be sure to contact us and get on the mailing list for these important training pieces if you’re not already taking advantage of this.
There are several types of abuse of older people that are universally recognized as being elder abuse and these include:
- Physical: e.g. hitting, punching, slapping, burning, pushing, kicking, restraining, false imprisonment/confinement, or giving too much medication or the wrong medication.
- Psychological: e.g. shouting, swearing, frightening, blaming, ridiculing, constantly criticizing, ignoring or humiliating a person. A common theme is a perpetrator who identifies something that matters to an older person and then uses it to coerce an older person into a particular action.
- Financial: e.g. illegal or unauthorized use of a person’s property, money, pension book or other valuables (including changing the person’s will to name the abuser as heir), often fraudulently obtaining power of attorney, followed by deprivation of money or other property, or by eviction from own home.
- Sexual: e.g. forcing a person to take part in any sexual activity without his or her consent, including forcing them to participate in conversations of a sexual nature against their will.
- Neglect: e.g. depriving a person of food, heat, clothing or comfort or essential medication.
Common abusers of older people
An abuser can be a spouse, partner, a relative, a friend or neighbor, a volunteer worker, a paid worker or a practitioner (e.g. a social worker, bank worker or solicitor).
Perpetrators of elder abuse can include anyone in a position of trust, control or authority. Some perpetrators may ‘groom’ an older person (befriend or build a relationship with them) in order to establish a relationship of trust.
In some abuse situations, the victim is physically or financially dependent on the abusive caregiver. This is sometimes described as dependent adult abuse.
The majority of abusers are relatives, typically the spouse/partner or sons and daughters, although the type of abuse differs according to the relationship. In some situations such abuse is ‘domestic violence grown old’, a situation in which the abusive behavior of a spouse or partner toward another continues into old age.
There has been limited research into the nature and extent of elder abuse, and it is often argued that the absence of such data is a reflection of the low priority given to work associated with older people. One study suggests that around 25% of vulnerable older adults will report abuse in the previous month, totaling up to 6% of the general elderly population. However, some consistent themes are beginning to emerge from interaction with abused elders, and through limited and small scale research projects.
We know how important is to be informed on these topics as professionals. We look forward to providing you with information to you that addresses issues you might see or need additional info on as you work in different facilities. Our training articles go out to our subscribers every other month. Be sure to contact us and let us know if you have been missing out. Preferred Healthcare Registry is your source for information and tools for your career, and the source for the best jobs in the industry!