0640.35 Abuse of Elderly/Persons with Disabilities

Administrative Rules Adopted by Bureaus Pursuant to Rule Making Authority (ARB)
Policy number
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  • ORS 124.050 – 124.095 Mandatory Reporting for Persons 65 and over
  • ORS 163.205 Criminal Mistreatment I
  • ORS 410.020(3)(d) General Adult Protective Services
  • ORS 410.610 – 410.700 Elder Abuse
  • ORS 441.630 – 441.680 Mandatory Reporting for Residents, Nursing Facilities
  • ORS 441.690 and 441.695 Residential Care Facilities and Assisted Living Facilities
  • ORS 441.705 – 443.911 Residents, Adult Foster Care Homes
  • MCC 8.90.025, 160-260 Residents, Adult Foster Care Homes
  • DIR 825.00 Domestic Violence, Arrests and Restraining Orders
  • DIR 850.20 Mental Health Crises, Response To
  • DIR 850.39 Missing, Runaway, Lost or Disoriented Persons

POLICY (640.35)

The Bureau will investigate all allegations of abuse to elderly persons (any person 65 years or older) and persons with disabilities (persons who are at risk of abuse, neglect or exploitation due to their mental or physical disability). Each investigation will be completed with a written report of the findings. The Bureau will work with appropriate agencies and resources to help lower the incidence of abuse.

Abuse will include the following for use in this directive:

a. Any physical injury caused by other than accidental means, or which appears to be at variance with the explanation given of the injury.

b. Neglect, or the failure to provide basic care, such as necessary goods or services, resulting in physical harm, unreasonable discomfort, or serious loss of human dignity.

c. Failure to provide direct patient care, (i.e., abandonment, desertion, or willful forsaking of an elderly person or the withdrawal or neglect of duties and obligations owed a dependent adult by a caretaker or other person).

d. Sexual or verbal abuse, or involuntary seclusion.

e. Financial exploitation or the illegal or improper use of another individual’s resources for personal profit or gain.

PROCEDURE (640.35)

Within two hours of the receipt of a report alleging abuse to a person in a long-term care facility or nursing home, a uniform member shall be sent to investigate. The investigating member must actually go to the facility or setting to determine the nature and cause of abuse to the patient(s). A person from Aging and Disabilities Services (ADS) is available to make an on-site visit with the member to provide intervention services as needed. The phone number is available under the Gatekeeper Program in the Problem Solving Resource Guide. Abuse in settings other than nursing facilities will be responded to in accordance to the immediacy of the situation.

If the abuse appears not to be of a criminal nature, the responding member will report the situation to ADS at the 24-hour number. As the mandated social services agency in MultnomahCounty, ADS will make a visit to conduct protective services investigations and intervention. If evidence of criminal activity is subsequently discovered, an Adult Protective Service (a program within ADS) worker will contact a uniform member for assistance.

The elder or person with disability may be photographed for the purposes of preserving evidence of the condition of the patient at the time of the investigation.

As defined by case law, reasonable cause is a reasonable ground for belief in guilt. For the purposes of this directive, the term will be considered the same as probable cause. If the investigation shows reasonable cause to believe that abuse has occurred, the investigating member will complete an Investigation Report and immediately notify ADS for follow-up services. The Elder Crime Response Team (ECRT) will send a copy of all reports relating to abused patients to ADS.

When a member believes it is necessary to remove an elder or person with disability from a long-term care facility, or other setting, due to abuse or neglect, and the person is agreeable, or, if unable to communicate, and a member determines that their present setting presents a risk to their health and safety, all efforts should be made to place them with a friend or relative. When this is not possible, call the ADS Help-line to provide information on an available placement location. In each of these cases, an Investigation Report will be completed and ADS will be indicated in the distribution box.

Under no circumstances will a call regarding elder abuse be given a coded disposition indicating no report was written. A Special or Investigation Report must be written detailing the member’s actions and documenting that ADS was either notified by telephone or forwarded a copy of the report.

All reports and evidence gathered under this order will be marked Confidential by the investigating member. The report and any pertinent supporting information may be shared with ADS protective service workers conducting elder and disability abuse investigations. All reports and documents gathered by ADS will be available to the investigating member.

ECRT sergeant will be responsible for case assignment for follow-up investigations.

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