“Pennsylvania Pushes Counties to Improve Elder-Abuse Casework” – US News

“Frustrated by shortcomings it has identified in elder-abuse investigations, Pennsylvania is trying to take a harder line with county agencies that field thousands of complaints a year.”

By MARC LEVY, Associated Press

HARRISBURG, Pa. (AP) — Frustrated by shortcomings it has identified in elder-abuse investigations, Pennsylvania is trying to take a harder line with county agencies that were tasked with fielding nearly 30,000 complaints last year.

The Department of Aging is starting to grade counties on a more aggressive compliance schedule after telling some they had failed, sometimes repeatedly, to meet regulations and expectations on how complaints must be handled.

Among the shortcomings identified by state inspectors were failures to show investigations had started within the timeframe dictated by state law and inadequately investigating a complaint and logging the casework, according to documents reviewed by The Associated Press.

Those documents were among hundreds of pages of records obtained by the AP through requests to the Department of Aging, which inspects the performance of 52 county-level agencies tasked with fielding and responding to complaints that can involve physical abuse, self-neglect or financial exploitation.

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