e level of awareness among PHC
professionals on elder abuse is very low, as ageing is a relatively new issue in Singapore. PHC providers, not recogniz- ing the problem of elder abuse and the need for screening, were maybe reluc- tant to test the questions or join the focus group discussions. As a result, the study coordinator could organize only two focus group discussions with PHC professionals. e rest of the feedback was given through written responses.
e PHC professionals and the older people
chose almost identical sets of questions to be retained in the questionnaire. Both groups also expressed similar feedback and views on most questions.
Focus groups with older people
Four focus groups were conducted with 45 older people. ey comprised three combined groups of older men and women and one group of older women only. One combined group was run in Mandarin. e female group consisted of Hokkien39 speak- ers. e rest of the groups were conducted in English.
A dialect group in Singapore.
A GLOBAL RESPONSE TO ELDER ABUSE AND NEGLECT
e general consensus among the 45 older
people was to retain six rather than five questions. ey identified Questions 1, 4, 5, 6, 8 and 11 as the most important in detect- ing elder abuse.
Question 1: e majority of participants felt that the word “sometimes” could re- place the word “usually”. Some remarked that the terms “feeling alone by oneself”, “isolated” or “neglected” could replace the term “lonely”, according to the Singapore context.
Question 4: Although the majority of the older people thought that this was a rel- evant and useful question, the term “pre- vented” came across as a poor choice of word, especially in the Asian context. It was suggested that “deprive” would be a better alternative.
Some felt that the question was long- winded and requested simplification of the wording for a better understanding by omitting words such as “health aids” and “hearing aids”.
Question 5: e participants thought that this question should be split into sec- tions and sequenced. is would make it easier for an older person to understand what each section entails, since the exist- ing question is too wordy. e term “yell- ing” was not considered to show abuse. Moreover, the question uses too many ad- jectives. e participants found no redun- dancy in the question, but again they urged