Registed Nurses' Association of Ontario


Recommendations released to prevent abuse and neglect of older adults

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The abuse and neglect of older adults are serious health and social concerns with devastating consequences, so RNAO has worked with leading experts to develop recommendations aimed at stopping elder abuse.

These 22 recommendations were released at a media conference at RNAO home office leading up to World Elder Abuse Awareness Day on June 15. They will be featured in RNAO’s upcoming Preventing and Addressing Abuse and Neglect of Older Adults: Person-Centred, Collaborative, System-Wide Approaches BPG.

Among other recommendations, the guideline encourages health professionals to identify the rights, needs and priorities of older adults before determining interventions and supports. It also calls for mandatory education on relevant issues for health professionals working with older populations.

The recommendations were developed by a panel of experts, including World Elder Abuse Awareness Day founder Dr. Elizabeth Podnieks and Dr. Samir Sinha, director of geriatrics for Mount Sinai and the University Health Network hospitals in Toronto. The recommendations were featured on QP Briefing,, and highlighted in a Toronto Star column.

The full guideline is set to be released in July, and will be supported by an e-learning course and a plain language resource for the public. It is part of a three-year RNAO initiative funded by the Government of Canada’s New Horizons for Seniors Program.

Check out a video of the media conference here.