Saturday, February 9, 2008

Advocacy group says elder abuse in Ireland is widespread

Recent figures on elder abuse in Ireland released by the HSE represent only a fraction of the cases in Ireland, according to a spokesperson for Age Action.  According to the figures, the HSE’s elder abuse officers dealt with 927 cases last year.  As the majority of the 26 elder abuse officers have been in their posts for less than 12 months, Mr Eamon Timmins, Age Action’s Head of Advocacy and Communications said the scale of the problem is likely to be much greater.  Age Action had previously used the results of international studies, which showed that between three per cent and five per cent of the older population have been victims of elder abuse,” Mr Timmins told IMN.  Applying this to Ireland, would mean that between 14,000 and 23,000 older people would have experienced elder abuse. The figures released show only a fraction of the problem. Because of the nature of the abuse, much of it goes unreported. Many people who are abused are afraid to speak out.”

Source:  Irish Medical News, http://www.irishmedicalnews.ie/articles.asp?Category=news&ArticleID=20324

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