As USA grays, elder abuse risk and need for shelters grows

January 11, 2012
Dr. Laura Mosqueda

IN THE NEWS: USA Today interviewed UC Irvine’s Dr. Laura Mosqueda for an article about the growing need for awareness of elder abuse and action to prevent it:

The number of people who live to age 90 and beyond has tripled in the past three decades to 2 million and is projected to quadruple by 2050, according to the Census Bureau. The number of 65-plus grew 15.1 percent since 2000 to 40.3 million or 13 percent of the total population.

As their numbers grow, the dismal economy has forced many to live with children and grandchildren, a situation that may tempt the unscrupulous to take advantage of the old in their care.

“Amazing things are occurring simultaneously,” says Laura Mosqueda, co-director of the National Center on Elder Abuse and director of the geriatrics program at the University of California, Irvine. “The fastest-growing segment are people over 85 and the percentage of people with Alzheimer’s, dementia is at an all-time high. … This is just an absolute recipe for disaster.”

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