The Division of Licensing and Protection is committed to the DAIL mission to make Vermont the best state in the nation to have a disability or grow old with respect, dignity, and independence. We have 38 staff members that work across the state to support Vermont's vulnerable adults, whether they live in a health care facility or at home. Our annual budget is approximately $4 million a year, of which approximately $3.6 million goes towards salary and benefits for staff.
Balanced and assertive regulation of health care organizations ensure that vulnerable Vermonters receive care with dignity, respect, and independence. When vulnerable Vermonters are maltreated, there should be an effective investigation and protective services put in place to prevent additional harm.
The Division of Licensing and Protection has two branches that work to protect vulnerable adults and individuals receiving care:
Survey and Certification (S&C) is the State Survey Agency for the State of Vermont, and in this role, they license and certify health care organizations to ensure they meet minimum state and federal regulations.
Adult Protective Services (APS) investigates allegations of the abuse, neglect, and exploitation of vulnerable adults and implements protective services, as necessary, to limit future maltreatment.
Programs and Services
Both S&C and APS work to protect and serve vulnerable adults. Vulnerable adults are individuals who are over 18 years in age and are residents of a facility licensed by S&C, are residents of a psychiatric hospital, recipients of home health services, have a diminished capacity to care for themselves, or a diminished capacity to protect themselves from maltreatment.
S&C conducts unannounced surveys at health care facilities. Surveys are done both on a recurring basis and as a result of complaints received. Their surveys and investigations can result in fines and other corrective action, up to revoking the license of an organization to operate.
When APS discovers that a person maltreated a vulnerable adult, that person may be placed on the Adult Abuse Registry, which is used by organizations that serve children and vulnerable adults to check the backgrounds of employees and volunteers.
Staff and Partners
S&C has 21 employees, 18 of which are Registered Nurses who are federally trained and certified to perform investigations and surveys, 15 of which are home based and travel throughout the state to investigate complaints received and to perform recurring surveys. All investigations and surveys are unannounced. Collectively, our staff has several centuries worth of experience in nursing across nearly every aspect of healthcare.
APS has 16 employees, 11 of which are home based investigators and field supervisors who travel throughout the state to investigate allegations of maltreatment of vulnerable adults. APS frequently partners with law enforcement agencies and human service providers in the performance of their investigations. Of the 11 field staff, seven have experience working as sworn law enforcement officers in Vermont.