(a) Any director receiving a report that a disabled adult is in need of protective services shall make a prompt and thorough evaluation to determine whether the disabled adult is in need of protective services and what services are needed. The evaluation shall include a visit to the person and consultation with others having knowledge of the facts of the particular case. When necessary for a complete evaluation of the report, the director shall have the authority to review and copy any and all records, or any part of such records, related to the care and treatment of the disabled adult that have been maintained by any individual, facility or agency acting as a caretaker for the disabled adult. This shall include but not be limited to records maintained by facilities licensed by the North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services. Use of information so obtained shall be subject to and governed by the provisions of G.S. 108A-80 and Article 3 of Chapter 122C of the General Statutes. The director shall have the authority to conduct an interview with the disabled adult with no other persons present. After completing the evaluation the director shall make a written report of the case indicating whether he believes protective services are needed and shall notify the individual making the report of his determination as to whether the disabled adult needs protective services.
(b) The staff and physicians of local health departments, area mental health, developmental disabilities, and substance abuse authorities, and other public or private agencies shall cooperate fully with the director in the performance of his duties. These duties include immediate accessible evaluations and in-home evaluations where the director deems this necessary.
(c) The director may contract with an agency or private physician for the purpose of providing immediate accessible medical evaluations in the location that the director deems most appropriate.
(d) The director shall initiate the evaluation described in subsection (a) of this section as follows:
(1) Immediately upon receipt of the complaint if the complaint alleges a danger of death in an emergency as defined in G.S. 108A-101(g).
(2) Within 24 hours if the complaint alleges danger of irreparable harm in an emergency as defined by G.S. 108A-101(g).
(3) Within 72 hours if the complaint does not allege danger of death or irreparable harm in an emergency as defined by G.S. 108A-101(g).
(4) Repealed by Session Laws 2000, c. 131, s. 1.
The evaluation shall be completed within 30 days for allegations of abuse or neglect and within 45 days for allegations of exploitation. (1973, c. 1378, s. 1; 1975, c. 797; 1981, c. 275, s. 1; 1985, c. 589, s. 35; c. 658, s. 1; 1985 (Reg. Sess., 1986), c. 863, s. 6; 1991, c. 636, s. 19(c); 1997-443, s. 11A.118(a); 1999-334, s. 1.10; 2000-131, s. 1.)