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Baltimore County joins fight against financial exploitation of older Americans

Recently, there’s been a lot of focus on the financial exploitation of older adults.

The FTC last month held a one-day workshop on senior identity theft, which highlighted some of the types of ID theft that older adults encounter.

Yesterday, the Investor Protection Trust released an online survey of more than 600 doctors and nurses about investment and financial fraud against older adults.

The nonprofit IPT offers an Elder Investment Fraud Financial Exploitation program that seeks to train medical professionals to recognize and report cases of elder financial abuse to authorities or others who can help. The theory is that doctors and nurses are on the front line and more likely to spot a patient who has been victimized.

The IPT survey found that one in five doctors and nurses were aware of an elderly patient who was the victim of investment fraud or financial exploitation. Eighty-four percent were willing to refer victims to sources of help.  And nine out of 10 medical professionals said they thought mild cognitive impairment makes older consumers more susceptible to financial fraud.

Meanwhile, Friday is World Elder Abuse Awareness Day. As part of that, Baltimore County Restoring Elder Safety Today is holding a rally and seminar Friday at the Towson Public Library at 320 York Road. The rally runs from noon to 1 p.m., with the seminar following at 1:15 to 2:15 p.m.

The group has compiled some grim statistics about the problem and some sources of assistance.

To register for the seminar, call 410-887-4200.

Copyright © 2015, The Baltimore Sun
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