DHS Adult Protection Newsletter - July 16, 2021

Minnesota Department of Human Services logo

DHS Adult Protection Newsletter

Adult Protection - Aging and Adult Services

dhs.adultprotection@state.mn.us - (651) 431-2609

July 16, 2021

In this issue:

Supporting Response to Vulnerable Adults Through MAARC Report Accuracy and Quality

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The Minnesota Adult Abuse Reporting Center (MAARC) is the entry point to adult protective services (APS) for vulnerable adults in need of safety and dignity. The operation of the MAARC is an important part of the state's system to support people who are vulnerable to abuse, neglect and financial exploitation. MAARC operations include supporting reporting by maintaining service level standards for call time response, professionally interviewing callers, accurate data entry, and timely referrals to support lead investigative agencies (LIA) with response for the safety and dignity of vulnerable adult's reported as experiencing maltreatment

Under the state’s contract with the MAARC vendor, approximately 10% of all MAARC reports received each month are randomly selected for quality review. Established benchmarks are used to review the quality of reports, assess objectives, and audit overall performance of the MAARC. Review of a recording for the randomly selected call is used to evaluate the quality of how MAARC handled the call. The goal is to ensure MAARC phone reports meet monthly quality measures, including 95% data entry accuracy in reports randomly selected for quality review. Evaluation is based on how the MAARC agent solicits information from the reporter, enters information into the Social Services Information System (SSIS) application, accurately notifies the correct law enforcement agency, and correctly refers the report to the LIA with jurisdiction.

DHS monitors MAARC service level data on a daily basis and has regularly scheduled meetings with the vendor to review quality and service outcomes and actively plan to address identified areas of need.

So far in 2021, average overall quality scores have been 92%, which exceeds the 85% contractually required quality standard.

Of the reports reviewed: 99% were accurately referred to the correct law enforcement agency and 99% were referred to the correct LIA based on information provided by the reporter.

DHS welcomes feedback from APS related to MAARC reports at dhs.adultprotection@state.mn.us

Quality analysis is based on evaluation of the following:

Reporter Tab:
• Ask Reporter how they heard about MAARC/if they know of web form?
• Correctly ask for all pertinent Reporter demographic information?
• Correctly collect Reporter's name using phonetic spelling?
• Correctly identify the Reporter's role/relationship to the VA/AP?
Vulnerable Adult Tab:
• Collect all pertinent VA demographic information?
• Correctly collect VA's full legal name using phonetic spelling?
• Correctly identify if VA resides in a licensed facility/receives licensed services/locate licensed agency using LNDX?
• Correctly identify VA's Disabilities, areas of Assistance Needed, and Services Receiving?
• Correctly identify VA's physical location?
Alleged Perpetrator Tab:
• Correctly collect all pertinent AP demographic information?
• Correctly collect AP's full legal name using phonetic spelling?
• Correctly identify the allegations associated with the AP(s)?
• Correctly identify the AP's role/relationship to the VA/Reporter?
Maltreatment Allegation Detail Tab:
• Ask additional questions to gain clarity and detail of the allegations being shared?
• Correctly identify if VA is deceased or experienced a serious injury as a result of suspected maltreatment?
• Correctly identify the date/time and location of incident?
• Detail their "Description of Incident" correctly & completely?
• Identify and explain how the Reporter became aware of the maltreatment?
• If the incident occurred at a licensed facility/by a licensed provider, did agent correctly identify licensed agency using LNDX?
Impacts and Effects Tab:
• Correctly ask and identify the impact/effect each reported allegation had on the VA?
Participants Tab:
• Correctly ask/capture other information sources or individuals associated with the VA or the incident?
Safety Tab:
• Correctly ask and identify the action taken to protect the VA?
• Correctly ask and identify the Environmental Safety and Notification Made by Reporter sections?
• Correctly assess the VA for emergency protection?
• If sexual abuse is alleged, did agent correctly identify if a sexual assault examination was received w/in 3 wks of incident?
Engaging the Caller:
• Follow all scripting?
• Follow all policies and procedures?
• Control the call properly?
• Remain neutral and professional throughout the call?
• Show active listening skills and answer all questions to the best of their ability?
• Correctly identify and refer to the appropriate LIA(s)?
• If EPS referral is required, did the agent correctly identify and refer to the appropriate County EPS/after-hours designee?
• If LE referral is required, did the agent correctly identify and refer to the appropriate County EPS/after-hours designee?
• If VA is deceased as a result of suspected maltreatment, did agent correctly identify/email appropriate medical examiner?
• If VA is deceased as a result of suspected maltreatment, did the agent correctly identify and email the Ombudsman?

RFP Release for Public Awareness Under the Coronavirus Relief and Response Act (CRRA) for APS

The Minnesota Department of Human Services (DHS) is seeking proposals for regional, local, or community-specific projects to increase public awareness on how to identify, report, and prevent maltreatment of vulnerable adults, especially within communities that have been underserved by the adult protection system or who have been disproportionately impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic.

To ensure that the outreach and service needs of racial, ethnic, and culturally diverse communities are met, DHS is specifically seeking proposals from organizations that include culturally diverse and knowledgeable service providers and/or who provide services to disparately impacted individuals.

Find more information and access the RFP here: Office of State Procurement website for Professional/Technical Service Contracting Opportunities (state.mn.us) 
Search for: Reference number PT3576

The information is shared for APS awareness of this outreach plan under the state’s CRRA funding, to share the opportunity with those who may be interested and for the county’s own planning on public awareness.

DHS will continue to update APS on the outcomes from the CRRA APS funding.

United States Department of Justice Makes Compensation Available for MoneyGram Financial Fraud

People who were defrauded and used MoneyGram to transfer funds between January 1, 2013 and December 31, 2017 are eligible to submit a petition to be reimbursed for their defrauded funds. APS assisting clients with this process is remediation for maltreatment. To file a Petition For Remission or find out more information about the program, visit the MoneyGram Remission website.

APS Data Trends

Data help policy makers and the public understand the nature and scope of an issue. In the case of adult protection, data provide a basis to understand if vulnerable adults are treated fairly and justly in our state. Data can impact program evaluation, benchmarks for quality and performance outcomes, budget planning and resource allocation, and inform evidenced based prevention and remediation/service response for vulnerable adults who have been maltreated.

“Without data, you're just another person with an opinion."
― W. Edwards Deming

The Vulnerable Adult Protection Dashboard provides annual state and county data on the number of reports, allegations, and investigation determinations. The dashboard explains what happens after reports of suspected maltreatment of a vulnerable adult are made to the Minnesota Adult Abuse Reporting Center (MAARC).

Non-Report Referrals are referrals made by the Minnesota Adult Abuse Reporting Center (MAARC) for calls which do not result in a MAARC report. Non-report referrals are made when the caller does not identify abuse, neglect, or financial exploitation of a vulnerable adult as the issue. The graphic below includes Total MAARC Non-Report Referral calls for calendar year 2020, as well as a breakdown of MAARC Non-Report Referral Types.

MAARC Non Report Referrals 2020

Data Source: MAARC

Adult Protection Training and Events

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APS Foundations

APS Foundations is intended for new adult protection workers and supervisors, or adult protection workers and supervisors seeking a foundations refresher. APS Foundations supports equity and consistency in service response and outcomes that safeguard and promote dignity for vulnerable adults, regardless of their location in Minnesota, and addresses core competency training recommendations in the ACL Voluntary Consensus Guidelines for State APS Systems.

APS Foundations training is offered online and consists of 4 sessions, 2 hours each, provided weekly over four consecutive weeks at the same time (8 hours total). Attendees will need to complete all four sessions to receive a certificate of completion. 

Upcoming Sessions

  • 9/9, 9/16, 9/23, 9/30 - Thursdays, 1-3 pm | Click Here to Register - Registration is for all four dates. After registering, WebEx links for each of the four sessions will be provided by DHS Adult Protection Unit.

If you have any questions or concerns, please contact us at dhs.adultprotection@state.mn.us.

Additional Training

Find information on adult protection policy, procedure, resources, and training information for mandated reporters and APS on the DHS Adult Protection: Policies and Procedures web page. Specific training resources for APS workers are included under the "Adult protection worker resources and training" drop down. These resources support APS workers meeting education requirements under 626.557 Subd. 9e.

APRS Quick Tips

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DHS Adult Protection Resource Specialists (APRS), Kelli and Angelo, are available to help with case consultation, policy clarification, resources, and general assistance regarding adult protection in Minnesota. Connect with your APRS today at dhs.adultprotection@state.mn.us or (651) 431-2609. 

APRS Quick Tip

You can always call your APRS to consult! We are happy to walk through challenging cases, help determine LIA jurisdiction, or support development of a safety plan, client engagement, or identify possible service interventions.

Our goal for the DHS Adult Protection Newsletter is to share knowledge specific to adult protection work in Minnesota, answer common questions regarding adult protection work in Minnesota, and provide awareness of DHS Adult Protection training opportunities. Please contact us with any questions or concerns at dhs.adultprotection@state.mn.us or (651) 431-2609

For more information about DHS Adult Protection, please visit us online DHS AP: Program Overview