Older adults are subject to vulnerability and abusive behaviors have serious negative health consequences. Since the phenomenon is underestimated, several challenges are faced to prevent, diagnose, and treat abuses on older adults. In this context, clinical forensic medicine practitioners can play a pivotal role. A retrospective monocentric analysis of all the files concerning victims of violence observed in the SVSeD Center in Milan over the age of 65 for a five-year period was performed. For each medical report, data regarding the variables of the victims, the type of violence, and the variables of the perpetrators were analysed. Older adult victims of abuses were 166. Abuses against women were more frequent than against men (less than 6 % of consultations). In one third of cases, subjects also suffered from disabling diseases and reported signs of physical violence. Perpetrators were male known individuals in almost 90 % of cases. Violence was perpetrated by a partner or a family member. The present study may help in identifying risk factors for domestic violence against older adults. Consequently, preventive policies should be designed to interrupt the vicious circle of violence. Older adult abuse deserves additional focus and better education for healthcare professionals and further research should be carried out to better understand the actual epidemiology of the phenomenon and to develop therapeutical and caring strategies.

Older adult abuse in a service for sexual and domestic violence: Medico-legal implications from the experience of an Italian center / L. Franceschetti, V.G. Merelli, M. Margherita, L. Maggioni, G. Barbara, A. Kustermann, C. Cattaneo. - In: FORENSIC SCIENCE INTERNATIONAL. - ISSN 0379-0738. - 338:(2022), p. 111383.111383. [10.1016/j.forsciint.2022.111383]

Older adult abuse in a service for sexual and domestic violence: Medico-legal implications from the experience of an Italian center

L. Franceschetti
Primo
;
V.G. Merelli
Secondo
;
M. Margherita;G. Barbara;C. Cattaneo
2022

Abstract

Older adults are subject to vulnerability and abusive behaviors have serious negative health consequences. Since the phenomenon is underestimated, several challenges are faced to prevent, diagnose, and treat abuses on older adults. In this context, clinical forensic medicine practitioners can play a pivotal role. A retrospective monocentric analysis of all the files concerning victims of violence observed in the SVSeD Center in Milan over the age of 65 for a five-year period was performed. For each medical report, data regarding the variables of the victims, the type of violence, and the variables of the perpetrators were analysed. Older adult victims of abuses were 166. Abuses against women were more frequent than against men (less than 6 % of consultations). In one third of cases, subjects also suffered from disabling diseases and reported signs of physical violence. Perpetrators were male known individuals in almost 90 % of cases. Violence was perpetrated by a partner or a family member. The present study may help in identifying risk factors for domestic violence against older adults. Consequently, preventive policies should be designed to interrupt the vicious circle of violence. Older adult abuse deserves additional focus and better education for healthcare professionals and further research should be carried out to better understand the actual epidemiology of the phenomenon and to develop therapeutical and caring strategies.
Clinical forensic medicine; Domestic violence; Interpersonal violence; Older abuse; Violence
Settore MED/43 - Medicina Legale
2022
Article (author)
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/2434/959057
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