Attributions of elder neglect: A phenomenological study of older people in Ghana


*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Journal PublicationsJournal Article (refereed)peer-review

15 Citations (Scopus)


The purpose of the study was to explore how neglected older people describe the factors contributing to their state of neglect. A Phenomenological qualitative approach making use of a semi‐structured interview was adopted. Purposive criterion and snowballing sampling were employed to recruit 12 older people facing neglect from Winneba in Ghana. Thematic data analysis making use of in‐vivo and focussed coding was employed. Four major interrelated themes were identified. The themes are (a) “Since the death of my husband”: neglect as a function of a natural cause; (b) “I did not plan well by then”: neglect attributed to the self; (c) “They do to all of us”: neglect resulting from the failure of government institutions; and, (d) “Our family do not even come to see us”: neglect attributed to the breakdown of the extended family system. Application of the ecological theory in the discussion improves our understanding of holistic factors depriving older people of care and protection in Ghana. The findings draw attention to programs and policies, taking into consideration the personal, health and environmental factors to meet the needs of older people in Ghana
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2172-2178
Number of pages7
JournalHealth and Social Care in the Community
Issue number6
Early online date6 May 2020
Publication statusPublished - Nov 2020
Externally publishedYes


  • caregivers
  • ecological theory
  • elder neglect
  • extended family
  • Ghana
  • phenomenology


Dive into the research topics of 'Attributions of elder neglect: A phenomenological study of older people in Ghana'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this