Navigation Links
African-American seniors at twice the risk for mental abuse, 5 times for financial exploitation

PITTSBURGHIn the first population-based survey to indicate a racial disparity in the psychological abuse of senior citizens, University of Pittsburgh researchers found that African American seniors could be twice as likely to be mistreated than elders of other races. The survey also revealed that African American elders could be up to five times more susceptible to being swindled. Reporting the survey results in The Gerontologist, the researchers urged that health care and social service workers be especially vigilant for the possible mistreatment of African American seniors.

Lead author Scott Beach, assistant director of Pitt's University Center for Social and Urban Research (UCSUR) and director of the center's Survey Research Program, said the study is important to the developing field of elderly abuse research. Beach worked with coauthors Richard Schulz, director of UCSUR and the center's gerontology program; Nicholas Castle, a professor of health policy and management in Pitt's Graduate School of Public Health; and Jules Rosen, a professor of psychiatry in Pitt's School of Medicine.

The Pitt survey is among only a few that focus on race as a specific factor in elder mistreatment, Beach said. In addition, the population-based survey collected information directly from senior citizens through face-to-face and telephone interviews, the most effective way to document unreported abuse, he explained; typically, elder mistreatment data is gathered from complaints filed with Adult Protective Services. In this way, the Pitt study helps fill a noted gap in elder mistreatment research: The National Research Council, in its 2003 report, Elder Mistreatment, described existing elder abuse research as having "a number of weaknesses," including a lack of clear, consistent definitions and an absence of population-based data.

The team interviewed 903 adultsa statistically large sampleaged 60 and older living in Pennsylvania's Allegheny County about instances of psychological abuse and financial exploitation occurring within the past 6 months and since they had turned 60. The sample contained 210 African Americans, or 23.2 percent of respondents, which is nearly twice the proportion of African Americans living in Allegheny County, Beach said.

Psychological mistreatment included being yelled at or insulted, having personal property destroyed, and receiving threats of injury, stoppage of care, or being sent to a nursing home. Among African Americans, 24.4 percent reported being abused since turning 60 and 16.1 percent reported psychological mistreatment within the past 6 months. Around half as many non-Black seniors reported abuse with 13.2 percent claiming psychological abuse since turning 60 and 7.2 percent saying it happened within the previous half-year. Interestingly, African Americans were usually less upset by aggressive behavior, yet more African Americans reported being "extremely upset" when deliberately insulted or when their belongings were destroyed.

African Americans reported even higher instances of financial exploitation, which was defined as having checks stolen, having money tampered with, and being made to sign documents they did not understand. Only 8.4 percent of non-African American elders reported being cheated since turning 60 and a mere 2.4 percent said it happened within the past 6 months. On the other hand, 23 percent of African Americans claimed that someone meddled with their money since they turned 60 and 12.9 percent said it occurred recently.

Most striking about the team's findings was that the racial disparity in mental abuse or financial exploitation was not explained by additional factors such as education, health, age, or socioeconomic status, Beach said. On average, African Americans in the survey tended to be slightly younger, less educated, and more likely to be single, divorced, or widowed. Nonetheless, non-African Americans of similar means, years, schooling, and marital status were still less likely to report mistreatment or financial deceit, Beach said.

Beach plans to follow up on the survey by including seniors from other parts of the country, interviewing the perpetrators, and developing more standardized definitions of the various types of psychological mistreatment and financial exploitation.


Contact: Morgan Kelly
University of Pittsburgh

Related medicine news :

1. African-Americans attitudes about lung cancer may hinder prevention
2. Step Up to Speak Up Events Use Spoken Word and African-American Greek Tradition of Stepping to Raise Awareness for Organ and Tissue Donation
3. New Report Says African-Americans and Hispanics More Likely to Have Alzheimers Disease And Dementia Than Whites
4. New Report says African-Americans Two Times More Likely to Have Alzheimers Disease and Dementia Than Whites
5. African-American infants at increased risk from tobacco smoke exposure
6. Definitive diabetes indicator deceptively high in African-American children
7. African-Americans and women are less likely to undergo bone marrow transplantation
8. Investigators identify gene associated with kidney disease in African-American population
9. Lack of trust in hospitals a major deterrent for blood donation among African-Americans
10. No link between genetic ancestry, asthma response in African-Americans
11. Caring Rose Home Care Launched To Help Seniors Live Independently
Post Your Comments:
(Date:11/27/2015)... , ... November 27, 2015 , ... ... the toilets were," said an inventor from Hillside, N.J. "Many people catch diseases ... cover so that individuals will always be protected from germs." , He developed ...
(Date:11/27/2015)... ... November 27, 2015 , ... Consistent with the ... 2016 Building Better Radiology Marketing Programs meeting will showcase some of the ... 2016, at Caesars Palace in Las Vegas with a pre-conference session on a ...
(Date:11/27/2015)... Los Angeles, CA (PRWEB) , ... November 27, 2015 , ... ... the Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs (CAAHEP) awarded accreditation to its ... exclusive list of CAAHEP accredited colleges, as only one of twelve colleges and universities ...
(Date:11/26/2015)... Marne, MI (PRWEB) , ... November 26, 2015 ... ... center for substance abuse located in central Michigan, have come together on Thanksgiving ... a specially produced video, available for viewing on the Serenity Point YouTube channel, ...
(Date:11/26/2015)... ... November 26, 2015 , ... Jobs in hospital medical laboratories and ... offered by healthcare staffing agency Aureus Medical Group . These fields, ... 2015 among those searching for healthcare jobs through the company’s website, ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:11/26/2015)... PUNE, India , November ... --> ... / personal emergency response system ... grow steadily for 5 years ... growing region expected to see ...
(Date:11/26/2015)... November 26, 2015 --> ... combination approach blends immunotherapy with Bremachlorin-photodynamic therapy for advanced ... approach blends immunotherapy with Bremachlorin-photodynamic therapy for advanced cancer. ... approach blends immunotherapy with Bremachlorin-photodynamic therapy for advanced cancer. ... has found that immunotherapy can be efficiently combined with ...
(Date:11/26/2015)... DUBLIN , Nov. 26, 2015 Research and ... "Asia Pacific Cardiac Pacemaker Market Outlook to 2019 - ... Drive the Demand " report to their offering. ... --> Boston scientific and others. ... global players including Medtronic, Biotronik, Boston ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: