Impact of Elder Abuse

Impact of Elder Abuse

Current analysis indicates that approximately 10% of elders experience physical abuse, psychological or verbal abuse, sexual abuse, financial exploitation, and/or neglect. People with dementia are at increased risk, with about 52% enduring some form of mistreatment. These findings are from the cases we know about, but a New York State Elder Abuse Prevalence Study revealed that with every case brought to light, 24 remain undiscovered. In nursing homes, the Government Accountability Office found that 15% of the care evaluations overlooked serious noncompliance issues that related to immediate danger or harm. From these studies and others, we know that elder abuse is happening more frequently than is recognized or reported.

Older people who have been abused have a 300% higher risk of death when compared to those who have not been mistreated, as well as higher rates of hospitalization. It is estimated that elder abuse injuries are linked with an additional $5.3 billion to the nation’s annual health expenses. In skilled nursing facilities, over half of the cases of adverse experiences were found to be preventable and lead to estimates of $2.8 billion each year in Medicare hospital expenses. Elder abuse has harmful impacts at all levels of society, affecting public health, resources, and civic engagement. Join Ageless Alliance in addressing policy changes and bolstering nationwide awareness to support a just society for all people.

To find more elder abuse research, visit the National Center on Elder Abuse.