Maltreatment of older people (elder abuse) includes psychological, physical, sexual abuse, neglect and financial exploitation. Some evidence suggests that 10% of older adults experience
some form of abuse, and only a fraction of cases are actually reported or referred to social services agencies.
Elder abuse is associated with significant morbidity and premature mortality. Numerous interventions have been implemented to address the issue of elder maltreatment. It is, however, unclear which interventions best serve to prevent or reduce elder abuse.
In a recent study, the investigators searched 19 databases on 12 platforms, including multidisciplinary disciplines covering medical, health, social sciences, social services, legal, finance and education. They also browsed related organisational websites, contacted authors of relevant articles and checked reference lists.
Only studies with at least 12 weeks of follow-up investigating the effect of interventions in preventing or reducing abuse of elderly people and those who interact with the elderly were included.
Conclusion: “There is inadequate trustworthy evidence to assess the effects of elder abuse interventions on occurrence or recurrence of abuse, although there is some evidence to suggest it may change the combined measure of anxiety and depression of caregivers.
It is uncertain whether the use of educational interventions improves knowledge and attitude of caregivers, and whether such programmes also reduce occurrence of abuse, thus future research is warranted.
In addition, all future research should include a component of cost-effectiveness analysis, implementation assessment and equity considerations of the specific interventions under review.”
Caregiver health, both mentally and physically, may well be the key to solving this issue.
Yours in Health!
Dr. Ken Romeo is a Principal and Chief Clinical Data Coordinator for the Healthy Aging Research Foundation (HARF) in Reno, NV.
Though each article contained on this Blog is derived from published Clinical and Research data contained in various national and international databases with links provided,
NO ARTICLE OR CONCLUSION IS MEANT TO DIAGNOSE, TREAT, PREVENT OR CURE DISEASE.
CONSULT YOUR HEALTH PROFESSIONAL BEFORE MAKING ANY CHANGES TO YOUR HEALTH REGIMEN.
Source: Cochrane Database Syst Rev. 2016 Aug 16;8: CD010321