Research Report Building Late-Life Resilience to Prevent Elder Abuse
A Randomized Controlled Pilot Study of the EMPOWER Program
Jennifer Yahner, Jeanette Hussemann, Erica Henderson
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From 2017 to 2021, the Urban Institute engaged in a researcher-practitioner partnership with the Phoenix-based Area Agency on Aging, Region One, to codevelop and then conduct a rigorous pilot study of an elder abuse prevention program. During the project’s planning phase, Urban and the Area Agency codeveloped the EMPOWER: Building Late-Life Resilience program, a 12-week home-visiting intervention informed by a theoretical framework, a logic model, and research-and-practice evidence focused on older adult resilience. Urban then conducted a randomized controlled pilot study of EMPOWER with a sample of 182 low-income older adults residing independently in Maricopa County, Arizona. The Area Agency delivered EMPOWER in person (and virtually, during the COVID-19 pandemic) to half of the randomly assigned sample. Urban collected detailed survey information from study participants before and after EMPOWER’s implementation. Findings indicate the program’s promise for improving late-life resilience among older adults as an important protective factor against elder abuse. Future research should explore EMPOWER’s impact with a larger, more diverse sample and over a longer period with a focus on elder abuse outcomes.

Research Areas Aging and retirement
Tags Community-based care Victims of crime
Policy Centers Justice Policy Center
Research Methods Qualitative data analysis Quantitative data analysis
States Arizona