Capitol - Your Illinois News Radar » *** UPDATED x1 - IDHS responds *** IDHS abuse and neglect allegations soar for developmentally disabled and mentally ill
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*** UPDATED x1 - IDHS responds *** IDHS abuse and neglect allegations soar for developmentally disabled and mentally ill

Friday, Dec 22, 2017

* AP

Allegations of abuse and neglect of developmentally disabled and mentally ill residents under the care of the Illinois Department of Human Services have increased by half since 2010 and the time it takes to investigate them has grown, too, an audit released Thursday found.

The report by Auditor General Frank Mautino discovered that abuse and neglect complaints jumped to 3,698 in the year that ended June 30, compared with 2,468 seven years earlier.

The audit also found that the agency’s Office of the Inspector General did not complete investigations into the complaints within the 60 working days agency rules require. Cases were closed in a timely manner 50 percent of the time in the year ending in June. In 2010, 85 percent of the cases were closed on time. […]

The increase is sharper among community agencies. During the period, the state moved swiftly away from large institutions to community-living settings. Mautino’s audit determined that abuse and neglect claims at community agencies overseen by Human Services jumped 81 percent during the seven-year period, to 2,714 last year. […]

The report indicates that nearly 13,000 residents lived in centralized developmental and mental health centers in 2010, compared with 7,000 this year. Human Services also has oversight over 421 community agencies operating 4,500 program sites, such as group homes or day programs. That’s a 31 percent increase from 2010

More info is here.

These are some of our most vulnerable people and we as a state are obviously failing them. Merry Christmas.

*** UPDATE *** From IDHS…

Each and every allegation of abuse or neglect reported to IDHS OIG is taken seriously. It is our goal to dedicate the appropriate amount of time and resources to each investigation. We are committed to ensuring safe and therapeutic care for individuals with disabilities and mental illnesses in both the community and at our state developmental and mental health centers.

2,295 more people with intellectual and developmental disabilities are now living in community integrated living arrangements (CILAs) compared to 2010, which is a 19% increase. The increase of individuals living in CILAs has increased the amount of allegations of abuse and neglect in these facilities. Since fiscal year 2011, the rate at which these allegations are substantiated has remained around 16%.

In the past two years, we have more than doubled staff and streamlined many previously manual processes. The larger workforce and new processes are already having a positive effect on investigation thoroughness and timeliness. Since fiscal year 2016, the number of days to complete an investigation has decreased by 15%. IDHS will continue to examine our investigation processes and staffing levels to determine any additional improvements that we can make.

- Posted by Rich Miller        

  1. - Arsenal - Friday, Dec 22, 17 @ 10:37 am:

    “On things that we can control, I would give us an A.” -Bruce Rauner.

  2. - DuPage Bard - Friday, Dec 22, 17 @ 10:42 am:

    Here comes the apologists for the failed Governor in 3….2…..
    It’s not his fault, it is years of Democrat control, Madigan etc etc blah blah blah
    He may not even make it out of this primary.
    So let’s see; Disabled abused, DCFS gift cards to close cases (resulting in death), Covering up Vet deaths and taking no moral responsibility, Junk Bond status for Universities, larger net loss of population during his tenure than Quinn’s
    That’s one heck of a Top 5 list

  3. - Anon221 - Friday, Dec 22, 17 @ 10:51 am:

    From the OIG report-

    “The OIG could not provide documentation to show that investigators had received the required initial training courses delineated in OIG directives. Further, a number of classes that fall under required initial training for investigators are no longer available because of the discontinuation of the NetLearning system.”

    On the DHS website there is a listing of the classes no longer available because, as DHS notes at the top of the listings:

    “Please note: These CBLs are no longer available due to the shut down of the myNetLearning system at midnight August 2, 2015.”

    Did anything replace myNetLearning??? Was anyone “in charge” of making sure trainings were done with another system??? Or, is this just all part of, “Bruce doesn’t have a social agenda…”???

  4. - Annonin' - Friday, Dec 22, 17 @ 10:51 am:

    Thank goodness GovJunk has been devotin’ full, laser sharp focus to addressin’ methods to reduce abouse complaints.
    And just as soon as DoIT cleans up the vets scandal, the food stamp scandal and that little mess over in Quincy their full blown reform plan. Comin’ right up.

  5. - Wilson - Friday, Dec 22, 17 @ 10:52 am:

    Current administration may share some blame but this is primarily the result of Quinn shutting down JDC & sending residents into settings that simply were not equipped to handle the necessary care. By the way, legislators who supported this shift are equally responsible! They should all be ashamed. I hope former chief of Staff Jerry S realizes what he has done.

  6. - Anonymous - Friday, Dec 22, 17 @ 10:55 am:

    Hey, hey, back off….. did you see his photo op of new Pepsi Bicentennial can? Did you? He’s amazing at these things.

  7. - Aldyth - Friday, Dec 22, 17 @ 11:06 am:

    There is nothing surprising about this. For a group home to survive financially requires eight residents. Take eight of the most egocentric people on the planet with a lot of needs and possibly serious behavioral issues, add an inadequate number of staff (who are underpaid and in many agencies have an extremely high turnover rate) and you have the recipe for abuse and neglect.

    People have to care and have a lot of tolerance to work in this field. When it is just a short term job and not viewed as a real career or vocation, you have a problem. They say you can’t solve a problem by throwing money at it? This is one where money is the only solution. You have to hire people to do the work of taking care of others. You can’t automate it. It takes people, good people to do it well. They don’t come free and you can’t run enough bake sales to pay salaries.

  8. - Anon - Friday, Dec 22, 17 @ 11:15 am:

    We get the government we pay for — we all have ownership in this.

  9. - Honeybear - Friday, Dec 22, 17 @ 11:22 am:

    Right on the money Aldyth.
    Care of human beings is hard hard work
    It takes passion
    It takes grit
    It takes training
    It takes money
    When you follow Bannonism
    “The destruction of the administrative state”
    This is what you get
    Staff agencies/departments/facilities
    Fund agencies/departments/ facilities
    If you are not affected by this
    You have privilege
    That at least
    You should acknowledge and be aware of
    And understand
    “Where but for the grace of God go I”
    We live in symbiotic community/relationship
    A huge huge
    Dysfunction of modern
    libertarians, raunerites, neoliberal
    And even some Repiblicsns and Dems
    Is the illusion/delusion
    Independence,autonomy, and agency
    I quote Saul Alinsky (peace be upon him)
    ” the fact is that it is not mans better nature but his self interest that demands that he be his brothers keeper.”

  10. - Not It - Friday, Dec 22, 17 @ 11:26 am:

    We don’t suck at governing, we suck at electing.

  11. - BobO - Friday, Dec 22, 17 @ 11:29 am:

    Community group homes funded by the state are required to report every potential incident of abuse or neglect. To be on the safe side, most agencies report anything that happens. Hence the AG reports a significant increase in allegations.

    The AG report also indicates there has not been any substantial increase in substantiated cases. This is absolutely due to the concern and oversight that organizations provide for the people with disabilities under their care.
    This is despite Illinois substantial underfunding of community disability programs.

    In his just released 2017 report, Dr. David Braddock, a leading disability researcher at the University of Colorado, ranked Illinois at 47th nationally in our fiscal effort funding of community developmental disability programs.

    This shortfall extends to the Dept of Human Service which now has one of the lowest per capita number of employees to manage the 50,000 people in group homes, state facilities and other residences where Illinois pays for supportive care.

    This underfunding has created a shortage of people willing to work in the disability field. Combine this with DHS’s inability to investigate allegations in a timely manner and you have another debacle waiting to happen. Illinois will get what it doesn’t pay for.

  12. - Anonymous - Friday, Dec 22, 17 @ 12:10 pm:

    Not It - not an either / or situation. Suck at both.

  13. - Truthteller - Friday, Dec 22, 17 @ 3:34 pm:

    We wouldn’t have abuse and neglect in right-to-work zones, would we, Governor?

  14. - The young gov - Tuesday, Jan 2, 18 @ 10:37 pm:

    I see some questions at the disability focused gubernatorial candidate forum hosted by Access Living on 1/18 brewing here.

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