News News New films tackle elder abuse of people with dementia 17 March 2020 MEDIA RELEASE The National Ageing Research Institute (NARI) will today launch a new film series: Balancing theolder person’s rights and carers needs: Elder abuse in the context of dementia, to provide health andaged care workers with the knowledge and confidence to respond to elder abuse in the context ofdementia. Associate Professor Bianca Brijnath, Director of Social Gerontology at NARI, said the films will leadto improved care of some of the most vulnerable older people in our community. "A consistent and fair approach to dealing with abuse n the context of dementia is possible," said Associate Professor Brijnath." Steps can be taken which keep families together and stop abuse." The films were developed in response to NARI research that showed health and aged care workerswanted clearer advice on what to do when they encounter abuse in the context of dementia. “Workers struggle to balance carer needs and the older person’s rights, grappling with the ethics ofelder abuse because of carer stress,” said Associate Professor Brijnath. “They are also often unsurewhether to instigate police or legal intervention.” “We expect the films will inspire consistency and quality of responses across the health and agedcare services sector.” The films address three common types of elder abuse: financial, neglect and physical violence. Theyrole-play how frontline workers should respond to suspected elder abuse, and provide explicitinstructions on what to do and where to go for help. NARI research shows older people with dementia are uniquely vulnerable to elder abuse ascognitive impairment means they are often unable to stop or report the abuse, which occurs largelywithin families. Associate Professor Brijnath said the films are based on the lived experiences of people. “Whileperformed by actors, the film’s stories are very real and were co-written with carers, older peopleand service providers.” She said the films have been validated across health, aged care, and social services as well as amongolder people and their carers. The elder abuse films were made in conjunction with production company Why Documentaries andfunded by State Trustees Australia Foundation. Films can be accessed via the NARI website: www.nari.net.au. Balancing the older person’s rights and carers needs: Elder abuse in the context of dementia, willbe launched online at www.nari.net.au, at 11am on Tuesday 17 March 2020. Notes to editor: For more information, or to arrange an interview: Rebecca MatthewsMedia and Communications Manager:[email protected] 03 8387 2314 or 0414 980 452 Find NARI on Twitter: @NAgeingRI_________________________________________________________________________________The National Ageing Research Institute (NARI) is Australia’s only independent national researchinstitute dedicated to ageing. NARI is committed to improving the life and health of older peoplethrough research and its translation into evidence based practice.