Arkansas agency closes backlog of adult abuse investigations

Arkansas agency closes backlog of adult abuse investigations
pic of senior playing bingo (Source: KAIT-TV)

LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (AP) — A state agency that investigates reports of abuse or neglect of adults in Arkansas has closed its backlog of nearly 9,000 cases.

The Arkansas Democrat-Gazette reports that the Department of Human Services recently notified lawmakers that its Aging, Adult and Behavioral Health Services Division has successfully eliminated a case backlog that had been building up for years.

Deputy Director Mark White says there are now 168 cases that need further investigation.

Department spokeswoman Marci Manley says the backlog was the result of caseworkers accepting all calls as investigative cases and often skipping administrative steps needed to officially close investigations. State law requires caseworkers to close investigations within 60 days of receiving the first report.

The division examines allegations of physical abuse, caregiver neglect, self-neglect and exploitation of adults who are unable to protect themselves.

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Information from: Arkansas Democrat-Gazette, http://www.arkansasonline.com