e results show that not all questions
are culturally sensitive – for example, the question on sexual abuse – and cannot be asked in all settings. More subtle ways have to be found to address this issue. e results also revealed some discrepancies between the set of questions regarded as suitable by PHC professionals and by older people. Based on the results of this study, we cannot yet recommend the tool to be universally applicable because it cannot conform to cultural sensitivities in all settings. It might be possible, however, to develop a tool that is sufficiently flexible in the core questions used that it could be adapted relatively easily for use in different geographical and cultural contexts.
A GLOBAL RESPONSE TO ELDER ABUSE AND NEGLECT
Nevertheless, it is important to devise a strategy for the hidden and widespread societal phenomenon of elder abuse. e Elder Abuse Suspicion Index together with other assessment techniques – such as an appropriate social work assessment and a manual containing information on prevention, identification and intervention approaches tailored to a variety of local contexts – are important starting points from where future efforts can proceed. We recommend that such initiatives should be developed in all countries across the world.
ese initiatives should complement efforts
aimed at the prevention of abuse and at protecting older people in need in order to address a problem that impacts thousands of older citizens’ lives.