e wording of the questions came across
as somewhat stilted and sometimes too “clinical”. e term “prevented” appears to be a poor choice of word: It was suggested
that “deprived” (Singapore)21
(Spain) would be better alternatives. Other expressions such as “basic daily needs” (Australia, Brazil, Singapore), “adequate living space” (Costa Rica) and “impeded your free movement” (Australia) appeared to be incomprehensible. “Health aids” and “hearing aids” can be omitted (Costa Rica, Singapore). Some of the questions include too many different ideas and are too wordy (e.g. Question 4). Other questions were too general (Question 10) and could be elaborated better with specific examples. In order to make the questions simple and straightforward, only one idea should be addressed within each item. For example, Question 6 asks about three different things: (i) being taken advantage of, (ii) being prevented from doing things and (iii) interference with being with the people you wanted to be with.
e questions were, in general, consid-
ered to be comprehensive in covering all key areas of elder abuse. Some forms of abuse, however, such as emotional abuse, neglect (Singapore), deprivation of food and the burden of child care, were considered relevant issues that were not addressed spe- cifically. Also, societal abuse, in the form of “ageism”, was a recurring theme. e subtle, and sometimes not so subtle, changes in the way older people are regarded by society as being “less of a person” as they age were an often-expressed concern that was consid- ered by participants to constitute abuse.
Questions 2 and 3, tackling the issues of asking for help and dependence, are good questions, but most older people would find it hard to admit that they need help or depend on somebody.
It was pointed out that it is becoming less likely that older people have a consistent and close relationship with a doctor they know; some questions (e.g. Question 12), however, require a trusting relationship between the patient and the doctor and depend on the doctor’s skills to ask the questions in a sensitive way that would encourage people to trust them.
The brackets indicate which country groups are meant or made a specific comment.