Title, Synopsis and Publications Investigators and Collaborators
Markers of cognitive decline in the written language of older Australian women / The terminology of elder abuse among older Australian women, living with and without dementia.
Study 2 (Markers of cognitive decline in the written language of older Australian women) Synopsis: Women living with dementia may lose capacity to control life choices: living arrangements, activities, medical treatments, and management of assets. With an increasing focus on abuse of the human rights of older people, suggested protective solutions include documented planning for future decisions. This study examines the written language of older women at various stages of cognitive functioning (no/pre-decline, early decline, later decline), to identify linguistic markers of cognitive decline. This new knowledge may lead to the development of more sensitive assessment tools and earlier detection of dementia, which will allow for proactive medical intervention as well as protective life planning.Study 3 (The terminology of elder abuse among older Australian women, living with and without dementia) Synopsis: Accurate detection is fundamental to addressing elder abuse. Globally, women have a higher likelihood of experiencing elder abuse than men, and are more likely to report it, but they may not use words like “abuse”. Dementia, a risk factor for abuse, may further inhibit women from overtly reporting. This study will qualitatively examine the terminology of abuse among older women, including those living with dementia. Findings will contribute to the evaluation of current methods of elder abuse detection for older women living with and without dementia, and inform possible education programs for health professionals and others working with older women.

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Prof Deborah Loxton
Prof Julie Byles
Ms Stephanie Lithgow
Prof Deborah Loxton
Dr Elizabeth Spencer
Mr Kim Colyvas
Mr Dominic Cavenagh