The Dependent Adult Abuse program provides evaluations and assessments of alleged abused dependent adults. The program endeavors to provide services and makes referrals to assist abused dependent adults acquire safe living arrangements.
Persons who meet the definition of "dependent adult", who have either been abused or neglected by a caretaker or have neglected themselves, are evaluated or assessed by DHS.
"Dependent adult" means a person eighteen years of age or older who is unable to protect the person's own interests or unable to adequately perform or obtain services necessary to meet essential human needs, as a result of a physical or mental condition which requires assistance from another, or as defined by department rule.
"Caretaker" means a related or non-related person who has the responsibility for the protection, care, or custody of a dependent adult as a result of assuming the responsibility voluntarily, by contract, through employment, or by order of the court.
"Dependent adult abuse" means any of the following as a result of the willful or negligent acts or omissions of a caretaker:
Protective Service Units are available in all DHS County offices. You can call your local DHS office to make a referral or use the toll-free, hot line number, which is answered 24 hours a day, 7 days a week: 1-800-362-2178
Catherine Stack, Program Manager
Hoover Bldg., 1305 E. Walnut St.
Des Moines, IA 50319-0114
Dependent Adult Abuse Statistics:
- Dependent Adult Abuse Historical Timeline:
Elder Abuse Subcommittee of Dept. of Elder Affairs begins meeting - first community-based group concerned with protecting abused dependent adults
1972-1982 Dependent Adult Abuse law written 1982 Law passed 1983 Law went into effect 1988 Mandatory Reporting begins 1991 1993 Assessments begin: Self-denial of critical care no longer goes on registry - kept in local office 1993
Assault added to physical abuse - injury no longer necessary
Criminal penalties added, legal interventions to remove dependent adult or perpetrator added
Dependent Adult Protective Advisory Council is appointed by Governor and begins meeting in August. State begins mandatory criminal and abuse background checks on prospective employees of health care programs
Assessment Task Force in DHS appropriations bill, Senate File 2410
Hosted first Regional Meeting of National Association of Adult Protective Service Administrators
2 Special DCI Agents established as liaisons between law enforcement & DHS
Elder Abuse Initiative service program begins.
Survey of 1998 forum participants on changes since 1998.
Abuse Education Review Panel for Mandatory Reporter Training curriculum approval begins.
Elder Justice Act introduced to Congress for first time [Would provide federal funds for elder abuse investigations]
Council initiates Systems Approach to Managing Iowans Safely
Dept of Elder Affairs receives VAWA grant to train law enforcement and Judicial system on dependent adult abuse
Local Forums to update and find out changes wanted by professions
New report finding added: minor, isolated and unlikely to reoccur, does not go on Central Abuse Registry
Department of Inspections and Appeals [DIA] establishes Dependent Adult Abuse Code for entities licensed and certified by DIA [135C Health Care Facilities, Adult Day Programs, Assisted Living Centers, Elder Group Homes]
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