Advertisement

Playground Politics Among Older Adults: How Elder Abuse Can Ruin the Golden Years

  • Paul R. Smokowski
  • Caroline B. R. Evans
Chapter

Abstract

As the US population grows older with the graying of the Baby Boomers, elder abuse is becoming increasingly common. From financial manipulation through physical abuse and neglect, the elderly are a particularly vulnerable group, especially those struggling with dementia or Alzheimer’s disease. This chapter reviews the research on elder maltreatment beginning with a review of definitions and prevalence rates. We then apply the bullying definitional framework to elder abuse and then discuss elder abuse in the context of community settings (i.e., when elders reside with their families or on their own) and institutional settings (i.e., nursing homes).

Keywords

Elder abuse Elder maltreatment Elder bullying 

References

  1. Acierno, R., Hernandez, M. A., Amsadter, A. B., Resnick, H. S., Steve, K., Muzzy, W., & Kilpatrick, D. G. (2010). Prevalence and correlates of emotional, psychical, sexual, and financial abuse and potential neglect in the United States: The National Elder Mistreatment Study. American Journal Public Health, 100(2), 292–297.Google Scholar
  2. Adams, M. V., Bagshaw, D., Wendt, S., & Zannettino, L. (2014). Financial abuse of older people by a family member: A difficult terrain for service providers in Australia. Journal of Elder Abuse & Neglect, 26(3), 270–290.Google Scholar
  3. Administration on Aging [AoA]. (1998). The national elder abuse incidence study: Final report. Retrieved from https://acl.gov/sites/default/files/programs/2016-09/ABuseReport_Full.pdf
  4. Allen, P., Kallett, K., & Gruman, C. (2003). Elder abuse in Connecticut’s nursing homes. Journal of Elder Abuse & Neglect, 15(1), 19–42.Google Scholar
  5. Baker, M. W., & Heitkemper, M. M. (2005). The roles of nurses on interprofessional teams to combat elder mistreatment. Nursing Outlook, 53, 253–259.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  6. Baucom, B. R., Atkins, D. C., Eldridge, K., McFarland, P., Sevier, M., & Christensen, A. (2011). The language of demand/withdraw: Verbal and vocal expression in dyadic interactions. Journal of Family Psychology, 25, 570–580.PubMedPubMedCentralGoogle Scholar
  7. Bendik, M. F. (1992). Reaching the breaking point: Dangers of mistreatment in elder caregiving situations. Journal of Elder Abuse & Neglect, 4, 39–60.Google Scholar
  8. Berman, J. (1994). Maladaptive networks: Elder abuse victims’ experience within the service delivery system. Doctoral dissertation, Columbia University School of Social Work.Google Scholar
  9. Biggs, S., Manthorpe, J., Tinker, A., Doyle, M., & Erens, B. (2009). Mistreatment of older people in the United Kingdom: Findings from the first national prevalence study. Journal of Elder Abuse & Neglect, 21(1), 1–14.Google Scholar
  10. Boldy, D., Horner, B., Crouchley, K., Davey, M., & Boylen, S. (2005). Addressing elder abuse: Western Australian case study. Australasian Journal on Ageing, 24(1), 3–8.Google Scholar
  11. Boldy, D., Webb, M., Horner, B., Davey, M., & Kingley, B. (2002). Elder abuse in Western Australia. Report of a survey conducted for The Department for Community Development, Seniors Interest, Freemasons Centre for Research Into Aged Care Services. Retrieved from http://apeawa.advocare.org.au/publications/Elder%20Abuse%20in%20WA.pdfBrill
  12. Brill, D. (1999). Safeguarding the financial interests of vulnerable seniors. Paper presented at the 7th National Guardianship & Administration Conference, Wesley Conference Centre, Sydney, Australia.Google Scholar
  13. Burnes, D., Pillemer, K., Caccamise, P. L., Mason, A., Henderson, C. R., Berman, J., … Lachs, M. S. (2015). Prevalence of the risk factors for elder abuse and neglect in the community: A population-based study. Journal of American Geriatric Society, 63, 1906–1912.Google Scholar
  14. Burston, G. R. (1975). Granny battering. British Medical Journal, 6, 592.Google Scholar
  15. Butler, R. N. (1975). Why survive? Growing old in America. New York, NY: Harper & Row.Google Scholar
  16. Castle, N. G. (2012a). Nurse aides’ reports of resident abuse in nursing homes. Journal of Applied Gerontology, 31(3), 402–422.Google Scholar
  17. Castle, N. G. (2012b). Resident-to-resident abuse in nursing homes as reported by nurse aides. Journal of Elder Abuse & Neglect, 24, 340–356.Google Scholar
  18. Castle, N. G., Ferguson-Rome, J. C., & Teresi, J. A. (2015). Elder abuse in residential long-term care: An update to the 2003 National Research Council Report. Journal of Applied Gerontology, 34(4), 407–443.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  19. Charpentier, M., & Soulières, M. (2013). Elder abuse and neglect in institutional settings: The resident’s perspective. Journal of Elder Abuse & Neglect, 25(4), 339–354.Google Scholar
  20. Choi, N. G., & Mayer, J. (2000). Elder abuse, neglect, and exploitation. Journal of Gerontological Social Work, 33(2), 5–25.Google Scholar
  21. Conner, T., Prokhorov, A., Page, C., Fang, Y., Xiao, Y., & Post, L. A. (2011). Impairment and abuse of elderly by staff in long-term care in Michigan: Evidence from structural equation modeling. Journal Interpersonal Violence, 26(1), 21–33.Google Scholar
  22. Coyne, A., Reichman, W., & Berbig, L. (1993). The relationship between dementia and elder abuse. American Journal of Psychiatry, 150(4), 643–646.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  23. Cripps, D. (2001). Rights focused advocacy and elder abuse. Australasian Journal on Ageing, 20(1), 17–22.Google Scholar
  24. Dong, X., & Simon, M. A. (2013). Association between reported elder abuse and rates of admission to skilled nursing facilities: Findings from a longitudinal population-based cohort study. Gerontology, 59, 464–472.PubMedPubMedCentralGoogle Scholar
  25. Dong, X., Chen, R., & Simon, M. A. (2014). Elder abuse and dementia: A review of the research and health policy. Health Affairs (Millwood), 33(4), 642–649.  https://doi.org/10.1377/hlthaff.2013.1261. PMID: 24711326.Google Scholar
  26. Faye, B., & Sellick, M. (2003). Advocare’s speak out survey “S.O.S.” on elder abuse. Retrieved from http://apeawa.advocare.org.au/publications/Speak%20Out%20Survey%20Final%20Report.PDF
  27. Friedman, B., Santos, E. J., Liebel, D. V., Russ, A. J., & Conwell, Y. (2015). Longitudinal prevalence and correlates of elder mistreatment among older adults receiving home visiting nursing. Journal of Elder Abuse & Neglect, 27(1), 34–64.Google Scholar
  28. Garcia, J. L., & Kosberg, J. I. (1992). Understanding anger: Implications for formal and informal caregivers. Journal of Elder Abuse & Neglect, 4(4), 87–99.Google Scholar
  29. Giles, H., & Helmle, J. (2011). Elder abuse and neglect: A communication framework. In A. Duszak & U. Okulska (Eds.), Language, culture and the dynamics of age (pp. 223–252). Berlin, Germany: Mouton de Gruyter.Google Scholar
  30. Giordano, J. A., Yegidis, B. L., & Giordano, N. H. (1992). Victimization of the elderly: Individual and family characteristics of financial abuse. Arete, 17, 26–37.Google Scholar
  31. Godkin, M. A., Wolf, R. S., & Pillemer, K. A. (1989). A case-comparison analysis of elder abuse and neglect. International Journal on Aging and Human Development, 28(3), 207–225.Google Scholar
  32. Hwalek, M. A., Neale, A. V., Goodrich, C. S., & Quinn, K. (1996). The association of elder abuse and substance abuse in the Illinois elder abuse system. The Gerontologist, 36, 694–700.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  33. Jirik, S., & Sanders, S. (2014). Analysis of elder abuse statutes across the United States, 2011–2012. Journal of Gerontological Social Work, 57(5), 478–497.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  34. Kosberg, J. I., & Garcia, J. A. (1995). Confronting maltreatment of elders by their family. In G. C. Smith, S. S. Tobin, E. A. Robertson-Tchabo, & P. W. Power (Eds.), Strengthening aging families (pp. 63–79). Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage.Google Scholar
  35. Lachs, M., Bachman, R., Williams, C., Kossack, A., Bove, C., & O’Leary, J. (2005). Older adults as crime victims, perpetrators, witnesses, and complainants: A population-based study of police interactions. Journal of Elder Abuse & Neglect, 16(4), 25–40.Google Scholar
  36. Lachs, M., Bachman, R., Williams, C. S., & O’Leary, J. R. (2007). Resident-to-resident elder mistreatment and police contact in nursing homes: Findings from a population-based cohort. Journal of American Geriatrics Society, 55(6), 840–845.Google Scholar
  37. Lachs, M. S., Rosen, T., Teresi, J. A., Eimicke, J. P., Ramirez, M., Silver, S., & Pillemer, K. (2012). Verbal and physical aggression directed at nursing home staff by residents. Journal of General Internal Medicine, 28(5), 660–667.PubMedPubMedCentralGoogle Scholar
  38. Lachs, M. S., Williams, C., O’Brien, S., Hurst, L., & Horwitz, R. (1997). Risk factors for reported elder abuse and neglect: A nine-year observational cohort study. The Gerontologist, 37, 469–474.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  39. Lachs, M. S., Williams, C. S., O’Brien, S., Pillemer, K. A., & Charlson, M. E. (1998). The mortality of elder mistreatment. JAMA, 280(5), 428–432.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  40. Lin, M., & Giles, H. (2013). The dark side of family communication: A communication model of elder abuse and neglect. International Psychogeriatrics, 25(8), 1275–1290.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  41. Livermore, P., Bunt, R., & Biscan, K. (2001). Elder abuse among clients and carers referred to the Central Coast ACAT: A descriptive analysis. Australasian Journal on Ageing, 20(1), 41–47.Google Scholar
  42. Lowenstein, A., Eisikovits, Z., Band-Winterstein, T., & Enosh, G. (2009). Is elder abuse and neglect a social phenomenon? Data from the first national prevalence survey in Israel. Journal of Elder Abuse & Neglect, 21(3), 253–277.  https://doi.org/10.1080/08946560902997629Google Scholar
  43. Mosqueda, L., Burnight, K., Gironda, M. W., Moore, A. A., Robinson, J., & Olsen, B. (2016). The abuse intervention model: A pragmatic approach to intervention for elder mistreatment. Journal of the American Geriatrics Society, 64(9), 1879–1883.PubMedPubMedCentralGoogle Scholar
  44. Mukherjee, D. (2013). Financial exploitation of older adults in rural settings: Family perspective. Journal of Elder Abuse & Neglect, 25(5), 425–437.Google Scholar
  45. Natan, M. B., Lowenstein, A., & Eisikovits, Z. (2010). Psycho-social factors affecting elders’ maltreatment in long-term care facilities. International Nursing Review, 57, 113–120.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  46. National Institute on Aging (NIA). (2018). Elder abuse. Retrieved from https://www.nia.nih.gov/health/elder-abuse
  47. Naughton, C., Drennan, J., Lyons, I., Lafferty, A., Treacy, M., Phelan, A., … Delaney, L. (2012). Elder abuse and neglect in Ireland: Results from a national prevalence survey. Age Aging, 41(1), 98–103.Google Scholar
  48. Page, C., Conner, T., Prokhorov, A., Fang, Y., & Post, L. (2009). The effect of care setting on elder abuse: Results from a Michigan survey. Journal of Elder Abuse & Neglect, 21, 239–252.Google Scholar
  49. Paveza, G., Cohen, D., Eisdorfer, C., Freels, S., Semla, T., Ashford, J. W., … Levy, P. (1992). Severe family violence and Alzheimer’s disease: Prevalence and risk factors. The Gerontologist, 32(4), 493–497.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  50. Payne, B. K., & Strasser, S. M. (2012). Financial exploitation of older persons in adult care settings: Comparisons to physical abuse and the justice system’s response. Journal of Elder Abuse & neglect, 24(3), 231–250.Google Scholar
  51. PHI. (n.d.). U.S. nursing assistants employed in nursing homes: Key facts. Retrieved from https://phinational.org/wp-content/uploads/legacy/phi-nursing-assistants-key-facts.pdf
  52. Phillips, L. R., & Guo, G. (2011). Mistreatment in assisted living facilities: Complaints, substantiations, and risk factors. The Gerontologist, 51, 343–353.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  53. Pillemer, K., Chen, E. K., Van Haitsma, K. S., Teresi, J., Ramirex, M., Silver, S., … Lachs, M. S. (2012). Resident-to-resident aggression in nursing homes: Results from a qualitative event reconstruction study. The Gerontologist, 52(1), 24–33.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  54. Pillemer, K., & Finkelhor, D. (1989). Causes of elder abuse: Caregiver stress versus problem relatives. American Journal of Orthopsychiatry, 59(2), 179–187.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  55. Quinn, J. Q., & Tomita, S. K. (1997). Elder abuse and neglect: Causes, diagnosis, intervention strategies. New York, NY: Springer Publishing Company.Google Scholar
  56. Rabiner, D. J., O’Keeffe, J., & Brown, D. (2004). A conceptual framework of financial exploitation of older persons. Journal of Elder Abuse and Neglect, 16(2), 53–72.Google Scholar
  57. Rodriguez, M. A., Wallace, S. P., Woolf, N. H., & Mangione, C. M. (2006). Mandatory reporting of elder abuse: Between a rock and a hard place. Annals of Family Medicine, 4, 403–409.PubMedPubMedCentralGoogle Scholar
  58. Rosen, T., Pillemer, K., & Lachs, M. (2008). Resident-to-resident aggression in long-term care facilities: An understudied problem. Aggression and Violent Behavior, 13, 77–87.PubMedPubMedCentralGoogle Scholar
  59. Rzeszut, S. M. (2017). The need for a stronger definition: Recognizing abandonment as a form of elder abuse across the United States. Family Court Review, 55(3), 444–457.Google Scholar
  60. Schofield, M. J., & Mishra, G. D. (2004). Three year health outcomes among older women at risk of elder abuse: Women’s Health Australia. Quality of Life Research, 13, 1043–1052.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  61. Sharon, N. (1991). Elder abuse and neglect substantiations: What they tell us about the problem. Journal of Elder Abuse & Neglect, 3, 91–108.Google Scholar
  62. Shinan-Altman, S., & Cohen, M. (2009). Nursing aides’ attitudes to elder abuse in nursing homes: The effect of work stressors and burnout. The Gerontologist, 49, 674–684.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  63. Shinoda-Tagawa, T., Leonard, R., & Pontikas, J. (2004). Resident-to-resident violent incidents in nursing homes. Journal of the American Medical Association, 291, 591–598.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  64. Sifford-Snellgrove, K. S., Beck, C., Green, A., & McSweeney, J. C. (2012). Victim or initiator? Certified nursing assistants’ perceptions of resident characteristics that contribute to resident-to-resident violence in nursing homes. Research in Gerontological Nursing, 5, 55–63.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  65. Teaster, P. B., Otto, J. M., Dugar, T. D., Mendiondo, M. S., Abner, E. L., & Cecil, K. A. (2006). The 2004 survey of state Adult Protective Services: Abuse of adults 60 years of age and older. Report to the National Center on Elder Abuse. Washington, DC: Administration on Aging.Google Scholar
  66. Thobaben, M., & Duncan, R. (2003). Domestic elder abuse by health care providers. Home Health Care Management & Practice, 15(2), 168–169.Google Scholar
  67. Wilson, J., Tilse, C., Setterlund, D., & Rosenman, L. (2009). Older people and their assets: A range of roles and issues for social workers. Australian Social Work, 62(2), 155–167.Google Scholar
  68. Wolf, R. S. (1997). Elder abuse and neglect: Causes and consequences. Journal of Geriatric Psychiatry, 30, 153–174.Google Scholar
  69. Wolf, R. S., & Pillemer, K. (1994). What’s new in elder abuse programming? Four bright ideas. The Gerontologist, 34, 126–129.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  70. World Health Organization. (2018). Elder abuse. Retrieved from http://www.who.int/news-room/fact-sheets/detail/elder-abuse
  71. Yon, Y., Mikton, C. R., Gassoumis, Z. D., & Wilber, K. H. (2017). Elder abuse prevalence in community settings: A systematic review and meta-analysis. Lancet Global Health, 5(2), e147–e156.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  72. Zeller, A., Hahn, S., Needham, I., Kok, G., Dassen, T., & Halfens, R. J. (2009). Aggressive behavior of nursing home residents toward caregivers: A systematic literature review. Geriatric Nursing, 30, 174–187.PubMedGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Paul R. Smokowski
    • 1
  • Caroline B. R. Evans
    • 2
  1. 1.School of Social WelfareUniversity of KansasLawrenceUSA
  2. 2.Rhode Island CollegeProvidenceUSA

Personalised recommendations