Elderly Protective Services (EPS) Merging to Office of Aging and Adult ServicesChanges in the 2012 Legislative Session resulted in the Governor’s Office of Elderly Affairs, Elderly Protective Services Program to be merged with the Department of Health and Hospitals, Office of Aging and Adult Services as of June 25, 2012. There will not be a change in phone numbers, office locations or staff. EPS staff will continue to receive reports, conduct investigation and interact with their community and resources. There will be no visible change to the public. Please continue to call the regional offices to make reports or request presentations for your staff. The population we serve will remain 60 years and olderA Safety Net for Elder AdultsWhat is the Elderly Protective Services Program?
The purpose of Elderly Protective Services (EPS) is to protect adults who cannot physically or mentally protect themselves and who are harmed or threatened with harm through action or inaction by themselves or by the individuals responsible for their care or by other persons.
EPS is the program administered by the State of Louisiana with regional offices that respond to reports of suspected abuse or neglect against persons aged 60 and older. EPS acts to prevent, remedy, halt or hinder acts of abuse and neglect against an elder adult in the community, while promoting the maximum possible degree of personal freedom, dignity and self-determination. Only when other efforts fail will EPS recommend referral or admission to an appropriate care facility for the elder adult, or seek judicial remedy to the situation.
Elderly Protectives Hotline: 1-800-259-4990
Louisiana Attorney General Consumer Info -Line: 1-800-351-4889
What is elder abuse?
Louisiana law (R.S. 14:403.2, 15:1501 et.seq.) protects adults aged 60 or older from acts or omissions which result in physical or emotional abuse and neglect, inflicted by caregivers and from self-neglect by an individual. Louisiana law also protects seniors from acts of financial exploitation and extortion.
What are some signs of elder abuse?
Individuals may mail questions or request information regarding abuse here:
• Physical actions, such as pushing, hitting, restraining an elder;
• Emotional and verbal intimidation, such as screaming, threatening, insulting an elder;
• Withdrawal or isolation by an elder;
• Sexual exploitation, involving an elder in any act or situation that is sexual in nature without their consent;
• Neglect, such as withholding of medicine, medical care, food, personal care, utilities, or daily necessities, or overmedication, or self-neglect;
• Financial extortion or exploitation, such as theft or misuse of money, property or the possessions of the elder.
Who should contact the people at EPS?
Physicians, medical interns, dentists, nurses, social workers, family counselors, police officers, licensed psychologists, coroners, registered podiatrists, occupational therapists, osteopaths, probation officers, financial directors, bank tellers, family members, friends...any one who has reasonable cause to believe an adult aged 60 or older is being abused or neglected by a caregiver or by self-inflicted acts should contact the EPS office.
What should be reported to EPS when an incident occurs?
Simply use your eyes and ears to note any unusual occurrences, such as: burns, bruises, black or swollen eyes, broken bones, dilated pupils, evidence of restraints, bedsores, lack of clothing or dirty clothing, body odor, dehydrated or malnourished appearance, no utilities in the home, disappearance of personal property, absence of food or medication, frequent change in doctors, discontinuation of visitor privileges, no visitors allowed, individual expressions of shame, embarrassment or fear.
The persons reporting incidents of abuse or neglect are immune from civil and criminal liability if they acted in good faith. Further, a person who knowingly fails to report abuse may be liable for fines and/or imprisonment. It is everyone's responsibility to report abuse or neglect of an elder.
What happens after a report is made?
Trained EPS staff screens all reports. If a report does not meet criteria for services or is ineligible, the case is referred to alternative community services and resources for action. Eligible cases of abuse or neglect are investigated by EPS program staff, who intervene when and where appropriate, and prepare a plan of resolution utilizing community resources. EPS staff monitors this plan at each step until the situation is stabilized. EPS program staff may call for physical, psychiatric or psychological evaluations as necessary, and will assist in obtaining alternative living arrangements for older adults when the situation requires it. When EPS staff determines a case of abuse or neglect cannot be remedied by other means, they may seek judicial action and may refer the case to the local District Attorney for civil or criminal action.
How to report suspected abuse or neglect:
Telephone the toll free EPS Statewide Hotline (from within Louisiana only) at 1-(800) 259-4990 or, if out-of-state, call 1-(225)-342-9722. A listing of EPS Regional Offices and the Parishes Served is listed below.
EPS REGIONAL CONTACT NUMBERS/PARISHES:
1208 Wisteria Street
Alexandria, LA 71301
Phone: (318) 484-2244
Toll Free: (In state only): 1-800-256-7001
Fax: (318) 484-2236
Baton Rouge Region
2124 Wooddale Blvd,
Baton Rouge, LA 70806
Phone: (225) 400-9576
Toll Free (In state only): 1 800 256-4277
East Baton Rouge
West Baton Rouge
300 Iberia Street, Suite 120
New Iberia, LA 70560
Phone: (337) 365-9855
Toll Free: (In-state only): 1-866-491-5044
Fax: (337) 365-9753
Lake Charles Region
Lake Charles, LA 70605
Toll Free: (337) 475-3500
Toll Free (In-state only): 1-888-491-2619
Fax: (337) 475-3510
804 North 31 Street, Suite A
Monroe, LA 71201
Phone: (318) 362-4280
Toll Free: (In state only): 1-800-954-6902
Fax: (318) 362-4295
New Orleans Region
320 Old Hammond Highway, Suite 300
Metairie, LA 70005
Phone: (504) 832-1644
Toll Free (In-state only): 1-800-673-4673
Fax: (504) 835-0409
1525 Fairfield Avenue, Room 538
Shreveport, LA 71101-4388
Phone: (318) 676-5200
Toll Free: (In state only): 1-800-259-5284
Fax: (318) 676-5212