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A Global Response to Elder Abuse - page 135 / 149





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for better clarity in order to prevent the question from being seen as complicated.

Question 6: Use of phrases such as “Has anyone disallowed you to do things you wanted to do?” or “Has anyone cheated you, or do you feel cheated?” rather than asking “Have you been taken advantage of?” was suggested for better clarity.

  • e majority of the older people felt strong-

ly that the question was too long. e ques- tion would be easier to understand if it was supported by a few examples. Nevertheless, they expressed the need to include the question in the instrument, as it touched on restrictions on one’s freedom and actions.

Question 8: Most of the older people felt that this question was important because it discusses financial issues, but there were some shared feelings that it should be divided into two parts. e first part should be focused on “tried to use your money” and the second part on “forced to sign documents”. A few of the older people were of the opinion that since the question refers indirectly to family members, it would sound better if the phrase “anyone you trust or close to you tried to use your money” was used instead.

Question 11: is question was consid- ered necessary in order to detect elder abuse. Some concerns were raised about the sensitivity of the question. In an Asian context, older people may not wish to relate their sufferings due to fear of “losing face”, especially if physical injuries were inflicted by family members. Suggestions were made to change the word “impede” for a simpler term such as “restricted”. Some suggested that the general practitioner should ask this

question if they see signs of bruising on an older person. It was pointed out that the second part of the question was needed in order to assess the degree of abuse.

Overall comments on the questions were:

  • Emotional abuse of older people needs to be considered in the instrument, and questions should attempt to address that.

  • e 12 questions have not addressed the

neglect component adequately, but there is a need to do so.

  • Questions designed have to be culture- specific and not tailored to suit Western countries, as certain questions are still regarded as too sensitive to ask.

  • e participants felt that Question 7 could

be eliminated.

Focus groups with PHC professionals

Two focus groups were held with 12 general practitioners. In addition, the questions were mailed to general practitioners, of whom eight sent back comments on the questions.

  • e 20 study participants chose Questions

11, 4, 5, 8 and 3 as the five most relevant (in order of relevance).

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