In Utah, an elder adult is defined as a person 65 years of age or older. A vulnerable adult means an elder adult or a person 18 years of age or older who has a mental or physical impairment which substantially affects that person's ability to:
- Provide personal protection
- Provide necessities such as food, shelter, clothing, or medical or other health care
- Obtain services necessary for health, safety, or welfare
- Carry out the activities of daily living
- Manage the adult's own resources, or
- Comprehend the nature and consequences of remaining in a situation of abuse, neglect, or exploitation
Utah state law requires that any abuse of elder or vulnerable adults be reported. It states that, "Any person who has reason to believe that any vulnerable adult has been the subject of abuse, neglect, or exploitation shall immediately notify the nearest peace officer, law enforcement agency, or Adult Protective Services Intake" (UCA 76-5-111.1 and UCA 62A-3-305).
Adult Protective Services can be reached at 801-264-7669 (Salt Lake County) or 800-371-7897 (toll-free statewide number). It can also be found at http://www.hsdaas.utah.gov/index.htm.
Failure to report suspected abuse, neglect, or exploitation of an elderly/vulnerable adult is a Class B misdemeanor.