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Abuse and Neglect of Community-Dwelling Older Adults: Index Generation, an Assessment of Intensity, and Implications for Ageing in Place


Abuse and neglect of older adults in the community are a threat to aging in place programs. Recently, some researchers constructed the first scale for assessing elderly abuse and neglect in the neighborhood for research and routine monitoring. This study provides a protocol for generating an index from this tool and assessing the intensity of abuse and neglect. Implications for aging in place are also provided. This study adopted a cross-sectional study and an analysis of secondary data on 515 community-dwelling older adults aged 60 years or higher. Standards in the literature were followed to develop a protocol for generating an index and assessing the intensity of abuse and neglect. The abuse and neglect scale has index scores ranging between 1 and 33, which means that the average score from the index that indicates the intensity of abuse and neglect would fall between this range. We found that abuse and neglect were moderate for the whole scale and the domain “discrimination and harassment” but was high for the domain “neglect and assault.” The dichotomization of the scale showed that high abuse and neglect can be associated with an increase or decrease in social activity. The abuse and neglect scale can be used as a monitoring tool to routinely assess the intensity of elderly abuse and neglect. The dichotomization of the scale can reveal how the highest level of abuse and neglect is affecting behaviors in community-dwelling older adults.

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Correspondence to N. Asiamah.

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The authors declare that they have no conflicts of interest. This article does not contain any studies involving animals or human participants performed by any of the authors.

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Asiamah, N., Conduah, A.K., Danquah, E. et al. Abuse and Neglect of Community-Dwelling Older Adults: Index Generation, an Assessment of Intensity, and Implications for Ageing in Place. Adv Gerontol 12, 176–183 (2022).

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  • abuse
  • neglect
  • older adults
  • scale
  • social activity
  • aging in place