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Upcoming Presentation at the NYC Elder Abuse Center

Presentation Date: 10/29/21
Location: Zoom

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On Friday, October 29, I will be giving a presentation to the staff of the NYC Elder Abuse Center (NYCEAC), entitled “The Risk for Dehumanization and  Non-Conscious Bias Towards Older Adults in Well-Intentioned Professionals”. The link to register to participate in this event can be found by clicking the image below.

We have to change the culture and our attitudes towards older adults in our society, even in our medical settings and the places where older adults come for much needed services and treatment. Many patients in their 80’s, who might be suffering from a physical condition, but are still fully cognitively intact, tell me: “the doctor does not talk to me! ” instead, the doctor talks to the person who accompanied the patient. The tendency to view people as less than fully “there”, less equal, less fully human, is much more severe when we perceive actual cognitive impairment, when the mind does not seem to be working as well as it ought to. Differences in appearance, due to age, illness, neglect, and behavioral characteristics associated with trauma can also lead to unintentional emotional bias that leave such elderly patients at an elevated risk for less empathy and less than optimal care by providers. This presentation will elaborate the risks and the ways to counter them in our work with elderly trauma survivors.

The New York City Elder Abuse Center (NYCEAC) a project of the Division of Geriatrics and Palliative Medicine, Weill Cornell Medicine, is a leader in developing innovative and effective responses to elder abuse, neglect and exploitation. NYCEAC was launched in 2009 to provide professionals in NYC’s many government, non-profit agencies, financial institutions and others with the information and tools they need to effectively assist victims of elder abuse. NYCEAC accomplishes this through an unprecedented level of collaboration and coordination.

                        Irit Felsen



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