December 21, 2016

EDC to Lead National Effort on Elder Mistreatment

WALTHAM, MA | EDC, in partnership with The John A. Hartford Foundation, will lead a national team of experts to address what is seen as a gap in the U.S. health care system—the failure to identify and prevent elder mistreatment, including abuse and neglect. The foundation has awarded EDC $775,000 to develop a model to help identify, assess, and prevent elder mistreatment, which is estimated to involve 10 percent of older adults.

As part of the Seen in the Hospital, Safe at Home project, EDC will serve as a coordinating center and convene leading national experts in four states to develop, test, and evaluate a model of intervention to assess and address elder mistreatment. The intervention will ensure that older people seen in hospital settings, including emergency rooms, will be assessed for potential mistreatment and receive appropriate treatment and referral.

“This initiative represents an important first step toward finally closing what we see as a gap in our health care system,” said Terry Fulmer, president of The John A. Hartford Foundation. “Clearly, no health system can truly be considered ‘age-friendly’ if elder mistreatment goes unchecked.”

EDC’s Rebecca Stoeckle, vice president for health and technology, will lead the effort, which brings together leaders in the field of elder mistreatment, including Carmel Dyer of the University of Texas Health Science Center; Alice Bonner, secretary of the Massachusetts Executive Office of Elder Affairs; Laura Mosqueda of the Keck School of Medicine at the University of Southern California; and Mark Lachs of Weill Cornell Medicine.

“More than 3 million older adults have experienced some form of abuse, and the incidence of elder mistreatment will almost certainly surge as our population ages,” said Stoeckle. “The John A. Hartford Foundation has taken a leadership position in calling for a public health response to elder mistreatment. With their support, we will work to translate the research results on elder mistreatment into a coherent, practical model of care that will transform real-world practice at scale.”

During this two-year planning grant, EDC will collaborate with various community partners on the model and begin to plan for the next phase, which will include implementation, program evaluation, and national dissemination.

This initiative is the latest in EDC’s growing body of work to use evidence to design user-centered and effective interventions that support vulnerable populations and the clinicians who care for them.

EDC designs, implements, and evaluates programs to improve education, health, and economic opportunity worldwide. Visit

The John A. Hartford Foundation, based in New York City, is a private, nonpartisan philanthropy dedicated to improving the care of older adults. Visit