Institutional Abuse of Older Adults: What We Know, What We Need to Know

Lynn McDonald, Marie Beaulieu, Joan Harbison, Sandra Hirst, Ariella Lowenstein, Elizabeth Podnieks, Judith Wahl

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review


Although Canadian policies support "aging in place," there still will be a number of older adults who will require institutional care in the future. Most research on elder abuse, however, has focused on domestic abuse and has paid less attention to institutional abuse. The purpose of this article is to comprehensively review current research to identify gaps in knowledge and methodological issues in the study of institutional abuse. Overall, 49 studies in English and 20 studies in French were reviewed, and 11 key-informant interviews were conducted with methodological experts. Methodological challenges are addressed in light of the review and interviews.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)138-160
Number of pages23
JournalJournal of Elder Abuse and Neglect
Issue number2
StatePublished - Apr 2012


  • elder abuse
  • incidence
  • institutions
  • mistreatment
  • neglect
  • nursing homes
  • prevalence

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Geriatrics and Gerontology
  • Social Sciences (miscellaneous)


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