Epidemiol Health.  2022;44(1):e2022017. 10.4178/epih.e2022017.

Elder abuse/mistreatment and associated covariates in India: results from the Longitudinal Aging Study in India wave 1, 2017-2018

  • 1Department of Development Studies, International Institute for Population Sciences (IIPS), Mumbai. India


Elder abuse has significant adverse consequences for the overall health and well-being of the elderly, including premature mortality. Using cross-sectional data, we assessed the prevalence of elder abuse in India, its variation across states, and associated factors.
Nationally representative data from the first wave of the Longitudinal Aging Study in India were analyzed. Bivariate and multivariate analyses were used to study the prevalence, state variations, and associated factors of elder abuse.
Overall, 5.2% of elderly adults (≥60 years) had experienced abuse in the year prior to the survey and 3% had experienced abuse within their own household. Verbal abuse or disrespect was the most common form of abuse. Considerable variation was observed in the prevalence of elder abuse across states and union territories, with the highest prevalence observed in Bihar (11.6%) and Karnataka (10.1%). In regression analysis, education level emerged as a protective factor against elder abuse, particularly among women. Older adults who lived alone, had functional limitations, had multiple morbidities, and had been hospitalized in the past year were more likely to experience abuse. Older adults who experienced abuse were 2 times more likely to experience depressive symptoms.
Cross-state variation in the prevalence of elder abuse and subgroup differences suggest that state-specific interventions and essential monitoring of older adults with functional limitations, chronic diseases, and recent hospitalization can further reduce the prevalence and consequences of elder abuse in India.


Domestic violence; Depression; Multimorbidity; Functional limitation
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