Mandated Reporter Training for Suspected Adult Abuse and Neglect
Text-Only Site

Unit 6


Share Adult Protective Services Practice Guidelines.

Explain additional reporting requirements for staff of a licensed MR Facility.

Review information covered in the training.


Practice Guidelines

Practice is client-focused, individualized, and based on a social work model of problem solving.

The client is presumed to be mentally competent and in control of decision making.

The client actively participates in defining the problem and deciding the most appropriate
course of action to resolve it.

The client exercises freedom of choice and the right to refuse services as long as the
individual has the capacity to understand the consequences of his or her actions.

The service alternatives that are pursued are the least restrictive possible; more intrusive
remedies, such as guardianship or placement, are undertaken as a last resort.

When guardianship or conservatorship is sought, the client has a right to an attorney to
represent him/her in court. Only a probate court can determine an adult is mentally
incapacitated and in need of a guardian or conservator.

The Department is responsible to demonstrate that all other means of protection and support
have been tried, including a private guardianship and/or conservatorship appointment, before
seeking public guardianship and/or conservatorship. The Department is the guardian and/or
conservator of last resort.

Public guardianship and/or conservatorship authority does not give the Department the
ability to change or manage an adult's behavior. The Department is responsible to develop and
implement a plan to make the person safe. If the client chooses not to participate in the plan,
guardianship may be ineffective.

Probate court determines if guardianship is "necessary or desirable as a means of providing
continuing care and supervision of the adult."


Reportable Events

The purpose of this section is to clarify the reporting responsibility of staff in a licensed facility for
adults with mental retardation.

In addition to reporting suspected abuse, neglect or exploitation, which is mandated under the
Adult Protective Services Act, staff in a licensed MR facility are responsible for notifying Mental
Retardation Services of “Reportable Events.”

"Reportable Events" are defined as events that have or may have an adverse impact upon the
safety, welfare, rights or dignity of adults with mental retardation or autism.

Events that must be reported immediately include:


Abuse, Neglect, Exploitation

Serious illness or injury

Rights violation

Lost or missing person


Suicide attempts or threats

Dangerous situations that pose an imminent risk of harm

Events to be reported within one business day include:

Assaults which do not require medical attention (client-to-client or client-to-staff)

Medication errors/refusals

Failure to obtain consent to changes in treatment or failure to obtain consent to new medical orders

Dangerous situations that are not an emergency

Use of restraints

Mechanical devices and supports used without a doctor's order or without supervision
of a qualified professional

Self-injurious behavior not addressed and tracked in the person's plan

What else to report:

Emergency services

Licensing violations

Missing medications

Rights violations

What not to report:

Minor injuries -- report only “serious or significant injury”

Seizures that do not require outside medical attention

Assault to staff unless it results in the consumer having a reportable event ( i.e. restraint)

Inappropriate language from the consumer

Restraints or other events that are part of an approved behavior plan that is being
monitored by the three-person committee

Guiding/escorting a person without threats or coercion

Anything that does not meet a reportable event definition

Guidelines for Reporting:

All events reportable under this policy must be reported to the BDS Regional
Office in the geographical region where the event occurred during normal business hours.

Use only the BDS Reportable Events Form to report. Do not use any other format.The form
can be obtained from the BDS website at (page will
open in new window - this content is located on another site)

Immediate reports by telephone to the regional office must be followed by the form as
soon as possible, no later than 2 business days.

If it is not immediate, report within one business day.

Please call the regional offices of Mental Retardation Services with any questions.


Maine law states that certain people must report suspected abuse, neglect or exploitation of an adult if they believe the adult is incapacitated or dependent.

Persons convicted of failing to report may be fined up to $500. If the person is a professional, the court or the Department also will report to that person’s licensing board or accrediting unit.

Anyone who makes a report in good faith is protected under the law if someone files a suit in a civil court.

Adult Protective Services maintains confidentiality of reporters except in very limited circumstances.

When making a report to the Department give as much information as you can:

If you have any questions about reporting, contact APS Intake to discuss the situation.

To make a report, call: 1-800-624-8404.

To report abuse, neglect or exploitation of an adult in a facility licensed by DHHS,
call: 1-800-383-2441; TTY 207-287-9312.

To make a report of an adult with mental retardation, call MR Services Regional
Office or after business hours, call CRISIS at 1-888-568-1112.

For staff of a licensed MR facility, in addition to reporting abuse, neglect or exploitation,
must report events that have or may have an adverse impact upon the safety, welfare,
rights or dignity of adults with mental retardation or autism.



** This is a form in the full-version that is setup to provide feedback on this training. The form is emailed to Karen Elliott when the "Submit" button is pressed. Please consider the questions below and discuss them with your Supervisor or email your comments and questions to Karen Elliott at or call 287-9200. **

What 1-2 points did you learn from this training that you did not previously know?

What additional information would you like to have received on this topic?

What (if anything) might you change about this training experience?

Did you enjoy the convenience of this delivery method? Yes or No


Final Review

** This activity in the full-version is in quiz format. It is a review of the "Myth and Facts" Activity in Unit 1. In the full-version, you are provided with a statement and you choose the correct response. At the end of the activity in the full-version, you are shown how many responses were correct. This activity in the full-version is not submitted to anyone else and is just an informative practice to make the information easier to remember. For the purposes of providing valuable information in this text-only version, the statements, possible responses, and correct responses are provided below. In the full-version, you are provided with a certificate if you get 8 out of 9 correct. If you would like to receive a certificate and you are not able to take the "quiz" due to it not being accessible to your text reader, please email Karen Elliott at or call 287-9200.**

Statement: Physical abuse is the most highly reported type of abuse.

Correct Response: Myth.

Statement: Most of the abuse of the elderly is done by their family, loved ones, or caregivers.

Correct Response: Fact.

Statement: Sexual abuse is the least reported type of abuse.

Correct Response: Fact.

Statement: The suicide rate is higher for the elderly than any other group.

Correct Response: Fact.

Statement: Adult Protective Services is only for the elderly.

Correct Response: Myth.

Statement: Financial exploitation is the fastest growing form of elder abuse and is frequently linked with other types of abuse.

Correct Response: Fact.

Statement: The critical factor in determining incapacity is that the person must be inable to make or communicate responsible decisions regarding his or her own person or property.

Correct Response: Fact.

Statement: Whether a person meets the legal definition of incapacity is determined by the caseworker.

Correct Response: Myth.


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