Elder abuse.
Article Type: Report
Subject: Nurse and patient (Analysis)
Aged (Abuse of)
Aged (Care and treatment)
Aged (Research)
Aged (Prevention)
Authors: Moran, Colleen R.
Jenkins, Peggy
Pub Date: 03/22/2011
Publication: Name: Journal of the New York State Nurses Association Publisher: New York State Nurses Association Audience: Academic Format: Magazine/Journal Subject: Health; Health care industry Copyright: COPYRIGHT 2011 New York State Nurses Association ISSN: 0028-7644
Issue: Date: Spring-Winter, 2011 Source Volume: 42 Source Issue: 1-2
Topic: Event Code: 310 Science & research
Geographic: Geographic Scope: Israel Geographic Code: 7ISRA Israel
Accession Number: 278760666
Full Text: Natan, M. B., & Lowenstein, A. (2010). Study of factors that affect abuse of older people in nursing homes. Nursing Management, 17(8), 20-24.

Elder abuse is a recognized phenomenon occurring in long-term care facilities. Abuse is classified as psychological, physical, financial, or sexual mistreatment, or neglect. Data regarding elder abuse is inadequate, as witnesses are unlikely to report cases even though it is mandated. Literature has suggested the incidence of elder abuse is higher in for-profit organizations and facilities with higher bed capacities, higher nurse-to-patient ratios, and decreased nurse satisfaction. The purpose of this research was to determine if these factors also increased elder abuse in Israel.

The facilities for this quantitative, descriptive study were randomly selected from each region of Israel. With approval from local ethics committees, the Iowa Dependent Adult Abuse Nursing Home Questionnaire was given to participants, and anonymity was assured. The response rate was 85%. The questionnaire investigated demographic data about each facility and the maltreatment that the nurses witnessed or conducted within the past year.

Fifty-four percent reported performing an act of maltreatment within the last year totaling 513 incidents. Sixty-four percent recorded at least 16 episodes of physical neglect occurring yearly. The most frequent forms of maltreatment were mental neglect at 34% and physical neglect at 30%. Elder abuse had a significant positive correlation with an increasing number of beds and high nurse turnover rates demonstrated by a Spearman test. Increased nurse-to-patient ratios led to significant increases in mental and physical neglect and the overall incidence of abuse. No findings suggested that for-profit organizations have higher rates of elder abuse.

Overall, rates of neglect were higher in this study than in previous studies. The researchers suggest that nurses were more likely to report neglect when it was viewed as a system failure instead of due to malicious intent. Nurses and healthcare institutions must be educated that staffing and worker satisfaction have global significance in the prediction of elder abuse. Healthcare providers can visit the National Center on Elder Abuse at www.ncea.aoa.gov to learn how to increase awareness of and prevent elder abuse.

Colleen R. Moran, Hartwick College, Oneonta, NY

Peggy Jenkins, Hartwick College, Oneonta, NY
Gale Copyright: Copyright 2011 Gale, Cengage Learning. All rights reserved.