Lifelong Health & Aging

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The Riverside Center for Excellence in Aging and Lifelong Health (CEALH)entered into a contract with the Adult and Aging Division of Fairfax County’s Department of Family Services to help develop a tool to assess risk for “repeat” reports of self-neglect and abuse in community-dwelling clients. CEALH’s work has primarily been with Adult Protective Services (APS). This project has involved considering and recommending an evidence-based approach to assess risk at onset of a new case and risk following designated time periods (e.g., investigation, intervention), to specifically determine if the risk level has been altered, illustrating that the intervention had an impact. A key objective has been to integrate the tool into Fairfax County’s current business process which means starting the process with their intake unit, Aging, Disability, and Caregiver Resources (ADCR). The tool was implemented at intake and by time of disposition (referred to as 45-day), and reassessment if the investigation was moved to an ongoing case. The information presented in this report is a compilation of data gathered over a 12-month period, which includes: a review of the National Center for Crime and Detention’s work with the New Hampshire Bureau of Elderly and Adult Services; a methodical review of the clients served by Fairfax County APS in fiscal years 2010 and 2011; telephone interviews with case workers and a focus group of case workers and supervisors; and a 3-month pilot of the Risk Assessment Tool. A series of recommendations are offered and CEAGH recognizes that it will ultimately be up to Fairfax County APS to determine next steps with implementing these recommendations.