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Elder Abuse Prevention

Doctor with senior man in wheelchairPrevent elder abuse. June 15th is World Elder Abuse Prevention Day.

Elder abuse is a significant public health problem. Each year, hundreds of thousands of adults over the age of 60 are abused, neglected, or financially exploited. In the United States alone, more than 500,000 older adults are believed to be abused or neglected each year.

These statistics are likely an underestimate because many victims are unable or afraid to tell the police, family, or friends about the violence.

Six types of maltreatment occur among persons over the age of 60:

  • Physical abuse
  • Sexual abuse
  • Emotional abuse
  • Neglect
  • Abandonment
  • Financial abuse

Find local agencies and services for older adults using the National Eldercare Locator at 1-800-677-1116. This is a public service of the U.S. Administration on Aging.

See Elder Maltreatment: Definitions for more detailed information.

Working to Prevent Elder Abuse

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) works to prevent violence before it occurs. Our activities include:

  • Documenting the extent of the problem,
  • Conducting research on the factors that put people at risk or protect them from violence,
  • Creating and evaluating the effectiveness of prevention programs,
  • Helping state and local partners plan, implement, and evaluate prevention programs, and
  • Conducting research on the effective adoption and dissemination of prevention strategies.
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