Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Data Gaps Hamper Elderly-Abuse Review in VT

Vermont has made big progress in clearing up a backlog of investigations into reports of abuse, neglect and financial exploitation of the elderly and other vulnerable adults, according to both critics and defenders of the state’s Adult Protective Services system.

But there’s concern among some lawmakers and advocates that the division of the Department of Disabilities, Aging and Independent Living may be clearing the backlog, in part, by being too selective in taking new cases.

And the department’s commissioner acknowledged in an interview and in testimony to the House Human Services Committee that there are big gaps in the data used by lawmakers trying to measure the division’s performance.

The House Human Services Committee heard testimony Thursday that APS failed to intervene in a Bennington County case of an 89-year-old woman whose daughter was threatening to kill her.

Sandy Conrad, executive director of the Southwestern Vermont Area Agency on Aging, said repeated calls from her office to APS beginning at 1:13 p.m. on a Friday in November drew no response until the following Monday. After a cursory review, APS sent a letter to Conrad’s agency saying, “The available evidence indicated that abuse, neglect or exploitation did not occur,” she told the committee.

Despite appeals to more senior APS staff, there’s been “nothing to date that changes this decision,” Conrad said. “And that perpetrator still lives in that household and is still a threat to that situation.”

Full Article and Source:
Data Gaps Hamper Elderly-Abuse Review in VT


Jessica said...

If they're being too selective then they're cooking the books.

Thelma said...

Sometimes APS does more harm than good.

Luis said...

Why not charge the fiduciaries a fee for monitoring them?

Anonymous said...

APS is useless, and if they agree to get involved, it is for the wrong reasons. I am an abused and expolited 86 year old, and APS has done nothing to go after the fraudsters, nor has the District Attortney, who considered fraud - and even fraud on the courts, a civil matter.(Originally claimed, they did not have the funds to investigate)It left me with deprivation of my property for the past 7 years, even though all my property is registered in my name at the County Recorders Office. Who is in charge, anyway????

Nancy said...

Cooling the books is right.

And I agree, Thelma. APS does good work, but boy they can do a lot of harm too.