WHO IS ACCREDITED?

Private Organization Accreditation

Sweetser, a Maine non-profit agency operating since 1828, provides comprehensive mental and behavioral health and substance abuse treatment services. Statewide, it serves around 15,000 consumers a year, including children, adults, and families in outpatient, office-based, and residential settings.
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ORGANIZATION TESTIMONIAL

Orange County Government, Youth & Family Services Division

Rodney J. Hrobar Sr., LMHC, CPP, Quality Assurance Manager

As the lead agency in Orange County, providing the safety net for children and families, it is reassuring that our clients can be confident that their needs will be addressed in accordance with the most stringent standards of public, as well as private, accountability as monitored and reviewed by the Council on Accreditation. 
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Purpose

Adult Protective Services protect vulnerable adults from exploitation, neglect, and abuse.

APS 10: Personnel

Direct service personnel are qualified by training and experience to deliver adult protective services.

Rating Indicators
1
All elements or requirements outlined in the standard are evident in practice, as indicated by full implementation of the practices outlined in the Practice standards.
2
Practices are basically sound but there is room for improvement, as noted in the ratings for the Practice standards; e.g., 
  • With some exceptions, staff (direct service providers, supervisors, and program managers) possess the required qualifications, including: education, experience, training, skills, temperament, etc., but the integrity of the service is not compromised.
    • Supervisors provide additional support and oversight, as needed, to staff without the listed qualifications.
    • Most staff who do not meet educational requirements are seeking to obtain them.
  • With some exceptions staff have received required training, including applicable specialized training.
    • Training curricula are not fully developed or lack depth.
    • A few personnel have not yet received required training.
    • Training documentation is consistently maintained and kept up-to-date with some exceptions.
  • A substantial number of supervisors meet the requirements of the standard, and the organization provides training and/or consultation to improve competencies.
    • Supervisors provide structure and support in relation to service outcomes, organizational culture and staff retention.
  • With a few exceptions caseload sizes are consistently maintained as required by the standards.
  • Workloads are such that staff can effectively accomplish their assigned tasks and provide quality services, and are adjusted as necessary in accord with established workload procedures.
    • Procedures need strengthening.
    • With few exceptions procedures are understood by staff and are being used.
  • With a few exceptions specialized staff are retained as required and possess the required qualifications.
  • Specialized services are obtained as required by the standards.
3
Practice requires significant improvement, as noted in the ratings for the Practice standards.  Service quality or program functioning may be compromised; e.g.,
  • One of the Fundamental Practice Standards received a rating of 3 or 4.
  • A significant number of staff, e.g., direct service providers, supervisors, and program managers, do not possess the required qualifications, including: education, experience, training, skills, temperament, etc.; and as a result the integrity of the service may be compromised.
    • Job descriptions typically do not reflect the requirements of the standards, and/or hiring practices do not document efforts to hire staff with required qualifications when vacancies occur.
    • Supervisors do not typically provide additional support and oversight to staff without the listed qualifications.
  • A significant number of staff have not received required training, including applicable specialized training.
    • Training documentation is poorly maintained.
  • A significant number of supervisors do not meet the requirements of the standard, and the organization makes little effort to provide training and/or consultation to improve competencies.
  • There are numerous instances where caseload sizes exceed the standards' requirements.
  • Workloads are excessive and the integrity of the service may be compromised. 
    • Procedures need significant strengthening; or
    • Procedures are not well-understood or used appropriately; or
  • Specialized staff are typically not retained as required and/or many do not possess the required qualifications; or
  • Specialized services are infrequently obtained as required by the standards.
4
Implementation of the standard is minimal or there is no evidence of implementation at all, as noted in the ratings for the Practice standards; e.g.,

For example:
  • Two or more Fundamental Practice Standards received a rating of 3 or 4.

Table of Evidence

Self-Study Evidence On-Site Evidence On-Site Activities
    • Program staffing chart that includes lines of supervision
    • List of program personnel that includes:
      1. name;
      2. degree held and/or other credentials;
      3. FTE or volunteer;
      4. length of service at the organization;
      5. time in current position
    • Procedures or criteria used to assign and evaluate caseloads
    • Supervisory schedule for 24-hour coverage
    • Data describing staff turnover
    • Job descriptions
    • Interview:
      1. Supervisors
      2. Personnel
    • Review personnel files

  • APS 10.01

    Supervisors have an advanced degree in social work or another human service field or are registered nurses.

    Interpretation: If program staff do not include an individual with an advanced degree in social work, a person with an advanced degree is available, as necessary, to provide consultation on complicated cases.


  • APS 10.02

    Personnel that provide adult protective services are qualified in accordance with state requirements.


  • APS 10.03

    Personnel who conduct assessments are qualified by training, skill, and experience and are able to recognize individuals and families with special needs.


  • APS 10.04

    Personnel receive training on, or demonstrate competence in:

    1. respect for cultural, ethnic, religious, and lifestyle choices and characteristics;
    2. collaborating with community service providers;
    3. providing preventive and supportive services to ensure maximum participation and self-determination; and
    4. communicating and working with vulnerable adults, including adults with disabilities.

  • APS 10.05

    Personnel receive training on:

    1. recognizing mental, emotional, physical, and sexual abuse, neglect and self-neglect, financial exploitation, and abandonment;
    2. investigative techniques, including evaluating risk;
    3. the rights of vulnerable adults;
    4. working with individuals and families who may resist social, medical and legal services;
    5. maintaining professional boundaries;
    6. using the organization’s authority to intervene on behalf of vulnerable adults who are abused, exploited, or neglected; and
    7. working with law enforcement.

  • FP
    APS 10.06

    Supervisory personnel are available by telephone 24 hours a day.


  • APS 10.07

    Supervisors or experienced workers provide additional support when personnel are new or are still developing competencies.


  • APS 10.08

    The program director or designee ensures:

    1. work schedules are flexible;
    2. staff coverage is sufficient at all times; and
    3. supports are in place to prevent burnout.

  • APS 10.09

    Caseload size and case assignments are sufficiently small to permit direct service personnel to respond flexibly to differing service needs, including frequency of contact, of individuals and families.

    Research Note: The National Association of Adult Protective Service Administrators recommends that adult protective service workloads be limited to 25 clients.


  • APS 10.10

    Employee workloads support the achievement of client outcomes, are regularly reviewed, and are based on an assessment of the following:

    1. the qualifications, competencies, and experience of the worker, including the level of supervision needed;
    2. the work and time required to accomplish assigned tasks and job responsibilities; and
    3. service volume, accounting for assessed level of needs of new and current clients and referrals.
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