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Current legal responses to elder abuse

Buka, Paul and Sookhoo, Dave (2006) 'Current legal responses to elder abuse.' International Journal of Older People Nursing, 1 (4). pp. 194-200. ISSN 1748-3735

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Abstract.  In this paper, legal provisions for dealing with elder abuse in social or healthcare settings will be considered. The need for such measures for detection and management of elder abuse will be highlighted. Interventions should take into account elderly victims' vulnerability, which may be due to physical and/or psychological dependence. The effectiveness of current interventions is limited due to a lack of cohesion and the absence of a specific legal framework. The term 'vulnerable adults' is broader than 'elder abuse'. It is difficult to estimate the extent of the problem of elder abuse because of the usually intimate settings within which it takes place - this may affect the strength of the evidence. The purpose of this paper is to encourage a debate on the effectiveness of current legal responses to elder abuse. The true figures of the incidence of abuse may never be known. Consequently, in criminal law trials, providing evidence on abuse can be very traumatic and intimidating for a victim because of the circumstances in which it generally takes place. The irony is that the likelihood of a criminal prosecution may be higher in more serious types of abuse where the evidence is overwhelming, on the basis of the res ipsa loquitor (facts speak for themselves) principle. The abuse in question may be domestic or institutional; the effects nevertheless are the same.

Item Type: Article
Subjects: K Law > K Law (General)
R Medicine > RT Nursing
Divisions: Faculty of Science and Health
Faculty of Science and Health > Health and Social Care, School of
SWORD Depositor: Elements
Depositing User: Elements
Date Deposited: 29 Nov 2016 09:50
Last Modified: 06 Jan 2022 14:42

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