The impact of caregiver stressors, resources, and perceptions on elder abuse
Lee, Min Hong
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The purpose of this study is to define the stress process of elder abuse of Korean primary caregivers who provide care for their older family members with disabilities. This study investigated what demographic variables of caregivers and care-recipients are associated with impulsive feelings to commit elder abuse, what stressors affect elder abuse, and what variables mitigate caregivers’ impulsive feelings to commit elder abuse. The sample included 279 South Korean family caregivers who provide the majority of day to day or task and emotional care for their older family members with physical and/or cognitive disabilities. All participants were interviewed, using a structured questionnaire which included caregivers’ and care-recipients’ demographic information, stressors, existing resources, perceived caregiver burden, and the impulse to commit elder abuse. Univariate analyses, hierarchical multiple regression analyses, and Structural Equation Modeling (SEM) were employed to address the purpose of this study. Caregivers who provided care for male care-recipients, dementia-affected older adults, and/or care-recipients in rural areas, showed a higher level of impulsive feelings to commit elder abuse. IADLs, acquiring social support, and caregiving burden were significantly associated with impulsive feelings to commit elder abuse by the caregivers. However, the results of SEM showed that the proposed framework (ABCX model) did not have good model fit as an explanation for impulsive feelings to commit elder abuse. Based on the findings of this study, implications for social work research, theory, practice and policy were suggested, particularly for Korean family caregivers who provide care for disabled older adults.