There are limited available data on elder abuse and its impact on quality of life (QOL) in China. This study investigated the prevalence of elder abuse in nursing homes and its associated demographic, clinical factors and QOL in Macau and Guangzhou, China. A total of 681 subjects (244 in Macau and 437 in Guangzhou) were consecutively recruited. The prevalence of elder abuse was 11.48% and 8.24% in Macau and Guangzhou, respectively. Multivariate analyses revealed that having a religion and depressive symptoms were independently and positively associated with elder abuse. No significant association between elder abuse and any QOL domain was found. Elder abuse is common in nursing homes in both Macau and Guangzhou. Appropriate strategies and educational programs should be developed for health professionals to reduce the risk of elder abuse.