Older people's views of support services in response to elder abuse in communities across Ireland

Emer Begley, M O'Brien, Janet Anand, Campbell Killick, Brian Taylor

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

8 Citations (Scopus)
3 Downloads (Pure)


Purpose – This paper seeks to present findings from the first all-Ireland study that consulted older people on their perceptions of interventions and services to support people experiencing abuse.

Design/methodology/approach – Utilising a grounded theory approach, 58 people aged 65 years and over took part in focus groups across Ireland. Four peer-researchers were also trained to assist in recruitment, data collection, analysis, and dissemination.

Findings – Participants identified preventative community-based approaches and peer supports as important mechanisms to support people experiencing, and being at risk of, elder abuse. Choices regarding care provision and housing, as well as opportunities for engagement in community activities where they can discuss issues with others, were identified as ways to prevent abuse.

Originality/value – The development of elder abuse services has traditionally been defined from the perspective of policy makers and professionals. This study looked at the perspective of the end-users of such services for the first time. The research also gave an active role to older people in the research process. The policy implication of the findings from this research is that enhanced attention and resources should be directed to community activities that enable older people to share their concerns informally thereby gaining confidence to seek more formal interventions when necessary.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)48-59
Number of pages12
JournalQuality in Ageing and Older Adults
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2012


  • elder abuse

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Gerontology
  • Community and Home Care
  • Care Planning

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