Disparities in systems development for elder abuse prevention among municipalities in Japan: Implications for strategies to help municipalities develop community systems

Miharu Nakanishi, Taeko Nakashima, Tatsuo Honda

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

In April 2006, a national elder abuse prevention and caregiver support law was enacted in Japan, where elder abuse prevention is carried out by municipalities, and caregiver support and intervention are provided by a public long-term care insurance program. The aims of this study were (1) to examine factors at baseline affecting disparities in the progress of systems development for elder abuse prevention among municipalities, and (2) to determine what kind of support municipalities request from prefectural or national governments to help municipalities develop systems for elder abuse prevention. Written questionnaires were administered to the most knowledgeable person in the department responsible for reporting elder abuse in each municipal government between December 2006 and October 2008. The final sample for analysis consisted of 489 (26.6% of 1840) municipalities that provided complete information. Municipalities that achieved a high level of implementation originally had a higher rate of reports of abuse per 1000 elderly persons and greater involvement by police and advocacy groups at baseline. Since cities were the largest type of municipality, they had the greatest number of activities as of 2 years after implementation of the law. The results highlight that the prefectural or national government should offer different types of support according to the kind of municipality: sharing and using experts in an extended association for municipalities with limited resources and smaller size (towns and villages) and aggregating information on difficult cases for larger municipalities (cities). Further research should investigate specific strategies that the prefectural or national government can implement to help promote systems development for municipalities with low rates of reported cases of elder abuse, such as training programs to ensure that all care providers can recognize the signs and symptoms of elder abuse.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)400-404
Number of pages5
JournalSocial Science and Medicine
Volume71
Issue number2
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2010 Jul
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • Elder abuse
  • Health policy
  • Japan
  • Local government
  • State government

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Health(social science)
  • History and Philosophy of Science

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