• It’s Time for a New SOG Cohort of Elder Abuse Multidisciplinary Teams

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    How does elder abuse show up in your community?

    How has the COVID-19 pandemic affected how that abuse happens or how local professionals respond to it?

    A new opportunity to address these concerns is opening up September 9th.The intent of the North Carolina Elder Protection Network is to connect, inform, and support our public professionals who are working together to find ways to prevent and respond to abuse of older adults.

    Thanks to support from the NC Policy Collaboratory, we are expanding this work into ten more counties.  Building upon the success of the 2019 workshop in which seven county teams (Buncombe, Guilford, Hyde, Iredell, Johnston, Mecklenburg, and Robeson) participated, applications for the 2020 cohort will open September 9th.

    The scope of the effort will broaden beyond the challenges inherent in forming and sustaining multidisciplinary teams (MDTs) to include new obstacles generated by the pandemic.  All workshops and follow-up support will be provided online.

    How to begin?

    If your county already has an MDT, reach out to the other members of your team to discuss whether participating in the workshop series would be helpful. If your county does not yet have an MDT, start reaching out to other key professionals, including social services, law enforcement, the Clerk of Superior Court, health care providers, and others who may be interested in collaborating in this way.

    Next, register for the first workshop, “Getting Started with an Elder Abuse Multidisciplinary Team”

    We provide an overview of how MDTs can be helpful in elder abuse cases.  Next, we highlight some of the unique challenges facing MDTs in North Carolina, including confidentiality laws.  Finally, we describe the series of MDT workshops that we will be offering in the fall and describe the application process.

    Funding from the NC Policy Collaboratory enables us to make this program free and open to all who are interested in attending.  It will be recorded and made available on-demand, with a link from the Elder Protection Network website.

    To register for the program on September 9th at 9:30 AM, click here.

    Then what?

    After at least three members of your county’s MDT have participated in the first workshop (either live or recorded), your team can apply to be a part of the fall MDT cohort. The application requirements and form are available here (the application will go live on September 9th). In short, your team must include certain core members (social services, clerk of court, law enforcement) and must commit to participating in the additional workshops.

    Up to 10 teams will be invited to join the 2020 MDT cohort and to participate in three additional workshops scheduled for October 14, November 5, and December 18. They will also have the opportunity to invite an SOG facilitator to participate in a team meeting to work on one or more issues of particular interest in your county and receive additional legal support from SOG faculty.


    If you have questions about the first workshop, the application process, or the 2020 MDT Cohort, please contact Meredith Smith or Aimee Wall.

    This project is supported by the North Carolina Policy Collaboratory at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill with funding from the North Carolina Coronavirus Relief Fund established and appropriated by the North Carolina General Assembly.

    Meredith Smith joined the School of Government in 2013. Her work focuses on the areas of law where clerks of superior court exercise judicial authority.
    Aimee Wall joined the School of Government in 2001 to work in the public health law field, where her research areas included confidentiality of health information, environmental health inspection and permitting programs, regulation of smoking in public places, and the responsibilities and authority of local boards of health. She also developed expertise in animal control law, including rabies, dangerous dogs and animal cruelty. In 2011, Wall shifted her research focus from public health law to social services law and is in the process of developing her work in this new field. She also coordinates educational programs for new legislators and serves as a faculty liaison with legislators and other state level policymakers. Prior to joining the School, she practiced health care law with Powell, Goldstein, Frazer and Murphy in Washington, DC, and served as a health policy analyst in the Office of the Secretary in the US Department of Health and Human Services. She is a member of the North Carolina State Bar and the District of Columbia Bar. Wall earned a BA in English from the Ohio State University and a JD/MPH from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.
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