Progress in elder abuse screening and assessment instruments

J Am Geriatr Soc. 2004 Feb;52(2):297-304. doi: 10.1111/j.1532-5415.2004.52074.x.


The responsibility of identifying elder mistreatment (EM) often falls on the healthcare professional. Many different screening and assessment instruments have been developed to aid healthcare professionals in making determinations about EM. The purpose of this article is to review existing EM screening and assessment instruments to examine progress in this field. The value and limitations of these instruments with regard to their use in different clinical and healthcare settings are discussed. The settings in which EM screening and assessment are conducted are also considered. The authors conclude that there is much to be done in terms of achieving consensus on what constitutes an appropriate screen or assessment instrument for detecting EM. Effort must be focused on instruments that can be used for brief, rapid screenings and those that can be used for more-detailed diagnostic assessments.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Aged
  • Elder Abuse / diagnosis*
  • Geriatric Assessment / methods*
  • Humans
  • Mass Screening / methods
  • Medical History Taking / methods*
  • Models, Theoretical
  • Physical Examination / methods*
  • Reproducibility of Results