Perception of elder abuse in Sweden: voices of older persons

Christen L. Erlingsson, Britt-Inger Saveman, Agneta C. Berg

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

28 Citations (Scopus)


The aim of this study was to explore the perceptions of elder abuse held by older persons in Sweden. Six focus group interviews were conducted. Through qualitative content analysis, the text revealed four themes: causes of elder abuse, conceptions of elder abuse, consequences of elder abuse, and coping with elder abuse. Changing society and families, as well as individual determinants, were believed to be causes of elder abuse. The main conception of elder abuse was that of robbery or assault, and the main consequence was fear. Coping with abuse included individual strategies and improvements in society. Issues of age discrimination were intrinsic in the findings. Gender differences were evident in the group dynamics. Nurses and other health care personnel need to be aware of what older persons believe to be the cause of elder abuse and what they consider abusive. Awareness of the results of this study can help in refining interview and assessment techniques and in designing training manuals.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)213-227
Number of pages14
JournalBrief Treatment and Crisis Intervention
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2005
Externally publishedYes

Swedish Standard Keywords

  • Social Sciences Interdisciplinary (50901)
  • Nursing (30305)


  • coping
  • elder abuse
  • focus groups
  • qualitative content analysisi
  • robbery


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