Over the years, elder abuse has turned into a major problem. Experts estimate that approximately one in every ten elderly individuals is subjected to one or more forms of elder abuse every year. Since elder abuse is known for being underreported, this statistic may actually be higher.
Elder financial abuse has been called the “signature crime of the 21st century” by the Director f the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, Richard Cordray. The most common form of elder abuse is financial exploitation. Ninety percent of instances of elder abuse involve someone well-known to the victim as the perpetrator.
The Consequences of Elder Abuse on our Society
The most devastating consequence elder abuse has on our society is the serious health consequences the victims of elder abuse face. Those that have been subjected to elder abuse, have a three times greater risk of premature death when compared to older individuals who have similar medical conditions but have not suffered from abuse. Victims of elder abuse are four times more likely to be required to reside in a nursing home facility and are approximately three times more likely to be admitted to a hospital when compared with similarly situated adults.
Elder Abuse Research and Prevention – Recent Advances
Since elder abuse has continued to be a serious societal issue, awareness of the problem is rising. There has been an increase in education, awareness, and research of elder abuse within the last twenty years.
Adult Protective Services
Adult Protective Services is an agency that handles cases in which there are suspected instances of elder abuse. Adult Protective Services is an important resource to contact if you find yourself dealing with a potential case of elder abuse. Contact the agency right away if you suspect that an elderly individual in your life is experiencing elder abuse.