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Department of Health and Human Services

Office of Inspector General -- AUDIT

"Safeguarding District of Columbia Residents Who Have Mental Retardation or Other Developmental Disabilities:  Responding to Reported Allegations of Abuse or Neglect," (A-12-99-00008)

September 11, 2000

Adobe PDF LogoComplete Text of Report is available in PDF format (3.99 mb). Copies can also be obtained by contacting the Office of Public Affairs at 202-619-1343.


This final report points out that District of Columbia agencies' policies and practices for receiving, tracking, and investigating allegations of abuse and neglect did not provide adequate safeguards for protecting District residents with mental retardation or other developmental disabilities. Specifically, we found that District agencies were not adequately tracking, or, in many instances, not promptly investigating reported incidents and that the existing policies and practices did not ensure that residential facility operators or other service providers always reported incidents. As a result, we concluded that residents receiving services from District agencies have not been adequately protected and remain at risk until needed safeguards are implemented. Recommendations focused on improvements to, and implementation of, needed safeguards. District officials generally concurred with our recommendations and specified actions they are taking to improve services to residents and establish such safeguards.