Current law allows for only one type of response for a county department of human or social services (county department) to follow after a report of mistreatment or self-neglect of an at-risk adult, regardless of the level of risk reported. That type of response requires a full investigation, including unannounced initial in-person interviews, and a finding by the county department.
The bill creates, on or after January 1, 2022, an alternative response pilot program (pilot) that a participating county department can utilize when it receives a report, related to an at-risk adult, of mistreatment or self-neglect, (report) and the report has identified the risk as lower risk, as defined by rules promulgated by the state department of human services (state department).
The state department shall select a maximum of 15 rural and urban county departments to participate in the pilot. Upon receipt of a report, a participating county department will not make a finding nor will it be required to complete unannounced initial in-person interviews, so long as the report has identified the risk as lower risk, as defined by rule of the state department. If, upon further review, the participating county department determines the situation is more severe, it shall revert to the process that is currently set forth in law for investigating a report.
The state department shall provide initial training on the pilot to participating county departments, as well as ongoing technical assistance.
The state department shall promulgate rules for the implementation and administration of the pilot. The rules must include, at a minimum, a description of the risk levels and the parameters around unannounced initial in-person interviews.
The state department shall contract with a third-party evaluator to evaluate the pilot's success or failure, including a consideration of the pilot's effectiveness in achieving outcomes over a 2-year period.
Each participating county department shall submit a report to the state department, as necessary, regarding the county department's use of the pilot and any data required by the state department to effectively evaluate the pilot.
The state department shall submit a summary report to the health and human services committee of the senate and the public and behavioral health and human services committee of the house of representatives as part of its "State Measurement for Accountable, Responsive, and Transparent (SMART) Government Act" presentations in January 2025 and January 2026.
The pilot is repealed, effective July 1, 2027.
(Note: This summary applies to the reengrossed version of this bill as introduced in the second house.)