Adult Guardianship and Complex Care Planning for Vulnerable Adults

Work Area: 
All PHC Sites
Base Site: 
St Paul's Hospital
Regular Full Time
Job Category: 
Social Work
Acute Care Hospital


Reporting to the Professional Practice Leader and in collaboration with the Social Work Site Leaders and/or from the Research, Education and Practice Coordinator, the position supports Providence Health Care and its inter-professional programs/teams as the adult protection expert to provide clinical support and guidance to ensure practice and organizational compliance with the statutory obligations and regulations of the Adult Guardianship Act. (AGA). Leads a clinical and consultative service by providing leadership and advice on adult protection cases, policy development, implementation and assessment of procedures. The delegated adult protection expert represents Providence Health Care at Provincial and Regional tables in its role as a Designated Agency under AGA (Member Adult Guardianship Act Provincial Advisory Committee (AGAPAC), Co-Chair Regional Adult Protection Committee (Co-Chair), Member Health Authority Adult Guardianship Community of Practice (HAAGCOP). This position is the identified community contact for adult protection cases and is responsible for developing and maintaining a strategic partnership with key organizations such as Vancouver Police, the BC Public Guardian and Trustee, ReAct Adult Protection Program, Community Living BC, and others.

The Social Worker, Adult Protection provides leadership and expertise regarding Adult Guardianship Legislation with regard to Adult Abuse Neglect and Self Neglect initiatives to fulfill mandated obligations of a Designated Agency. This includes education, protocol development, implementation promotion and orientation to ensure sustainability and accountability of a complex system of care. Collaborates with a variety of internal and external stakeholders including: patients and families, government officials, legal counsel, insurers, and other agencies. Provides consultation and support around complex care planning to interdisciplinary team members across program areas. Collaborates with leadership within the organization to support clinicians in care planning (Risk, Patient Care Quality, Ethics, Access and Flow). Builds relationships with community partners who share a responsibility in the care and protection of vulnerable adults (e.g., RCMP, Victims Assistance, Public Guardian and Trustee, etc.) Provides leadership and guidance to support staff, in investigation of Adult Abuse, Neglect, and Self Neglect. Participates in relevant research projects, keeps abreast of current research findings.


Comprehensive knowledge of social work theory and practice.
Demonstrated knowledge of Adult Guardianship, Health Care Consent Care Facility Admissions Mental Health Legislation, Patients Property Act, etc.
Demonstrated ability to conduct complex social and psychosocial assessments including those related to investigations of alleged Abuse, Neglect and Self Neglect.
Thorough knowledge of community resources and relevant legislation
Ability to develop strong working relationships.
Ability to apply critical thinking to resolve problems.
Ability to develop, review, evaluate and write clinical protocols and guidelines.
Knowledge of education principles, methods and tools.
Knowledge of research methodology and processes.
Demonstrated ability to use critical thinking in approach to teaching.
Demonstrated ability to coach and mentor staff in a creative learning environment.
Demonstrated ability to teach and facilitate learning.
Demonstrated ability to conduct and facilitate formal and informal presentations.
Demonstrated ability to develop education programs and learning resources.
Demonstrated ability to communicate and deal effectively with patients, families, and health care providers.
Demonstrated ability to work independently and collaboratively as a member of an inter-professional team.
Knowledge of other health care disciplines and their role in healthcare.
Demonstrated ability to deal with and/or guide others in conflict resolution issues.
Physical ability to carry out the duties of the position.
Ability to work independently and prioritize issues and workload.
Ability to operate related equipment.


Masters Degree in Social Work from an accredited university. Post graduate continuing education training in working with vulnerable/incapable adults (i.e. Full completion of the ReAct Adult Protection Curriculum (Modules 1 – 10)). Five (5) years recent related experience in working with issues of adult abuse and neglect and self-neglect with vulnerable adults including recent social work experience working within the complex mental health and older adult populations and understanding of the patient and family dynamics of Abuse and Neglect. Is a Qualified Health Care Provider (as defined by AGS 2.1) and has experience conducting assessments of incapability under Statutory Property Guardianship (AGA 2.1) and Health Care Consent and Care Facility Admissions Part 3. or an equivalent combination of education, training and experience.

Current full registration with the British Columbia College of Social Workers.


Provides consultation services to other social work staff, disciplines and community agencies regarding the care and management of patients with complex psychosocial needs and risks associated with abuse, neglect and self-neglect by working within the legislative framework for investigation and assessment. Provides consultation to social workers in accordance with established standards of practice and legislation by methods such as identifying patient risk, supporting investigation, assessment, intervention and documentation.
Provides consultation, direction and support to social workers in cases where the protective tools of the Adult Guardianship legislation are being implemented (eg. Emergency Provisions, Support and Assistance plans), Contributes to the development of the care plan to ensure PHC meets it’s mandated responsibilities while ensuring that the Guiding Principles of the AGA legislation are upheld.
Within the context of a Designated Agency, supports and provides education related to care planning for vulnerable adults to clinical staff and learners across disciplines in collaboration with social workers, patient care managers, physicians, ethics and risk management. ( i.e. Presentations at Grand rounds or to new employees/learners, Facilitation of case reviews)
Coordinates PHC response as a Designated Agency under Adult Guardianship. Provides annual update of PHC’s response under AGA to PHC Senior Leadership. Regularly reviews PHC’s framework of response, Orients, educates and on-boards new PHC social workers as designated responders under AGA.
Builds relationships and strategic partners with internal and external partners to ensure shared responsibility in the care and protection of vulnerable adults. Advocates for patients who might be at risk by arranging hospital and community meetings for support and safety treatment planning or in situations where there is a dispute in treatment goals.
Provides services to patients, families and health care providers in the identification of adults who have been identified at risk for Abuse, Neglect and Self Neglect. Provides consultation and support to Social Workers to ensure they understand their mandated role of designated responder, the process of investigation, assessment follow-up with internal and community stakeholders, supporting the inter-professional treatment plan to coordinate services, facilitating meetings and making referrals to appropriate resources such as the Public Guardian and Trustee.
Remains current on all related legislation and actively participates in legislative consultation opportunities with the Ministry of Health and Ministry of the Attorney General.
Leads the development of policies, practice guidelines and clinical support tools related to Adult Protection work.
Represents Providence Health Care in its role as a Designated Agency on Provincial Committees such as AGPAC in order to stay updated about provincial legislative and policy initiatives. Participates in subcommittees to contribute to provincial legislative, policy and practice guideline changes. Provides information to Public Guardian and Trustee about potential impact of proposed legislative and regulatory changes, on PHC’s framework for response as a Designated Agency. Updates PHC Leadership about proposed changes.
In collaboration with the VCH Regional Adult Protection Resource (Re-ACT), develops and implements education for PHC clinicians which works toward a broad understanding of Adult Guardianship across program areas and disciplines. Participates in regular quality reviews, and working groups to contribute to the updating of the content and format of the curriculum. Facilitates teaching of the curriculum, as well as supports the training of future facilitators.
Teaches and mentors clinical staff to build confidence and competence in their role as incapability assessors. Coordinates and facilitates bi-monthly Community of Practice for PHC Incapability assessors. For program areas without qualified assessors, acts as incapability assessor for the purposes of financial capability under AGA 2.1 and for Care Facility Admissions under HCCCFAA
Contributes to development of clinical knowledge and skill around assessing and care planning for vulnerable adults at the Post-Secondary level.
Participates as a member of the inter-professional team in consultation with unit social worker by methods such as interviewing the patient and/or family, assessing and assisting in developing care plans on admission to assist in developing and coordinating discharge plan for patients with complex medical needs.
Participate as a member of local committees, (eg. PHC SW leadership Council, VCH/PHC Designated Responder Coordinator Community of Practice) identifying opportunities for change, accessing available resources, analyzing outcomes and identifying areas for improved efficiency and effectiveness in service delivery to enhance patient service within hospital programs and reduce gaps in service in the community.
Participates in team meetings by providing mentoring, teaching and providing orientation to new and existing staff regarding Adult Guardianship legislation pertaining to care of the vulnerable adults at risk.
Coordinates a tracking data system for patients who are identified at risk for abuse, neglect and self neglect and manages a repository for certificates of incapability within Providence Health Care. Submits annual reports to the B.C. Seniors Advocate about the role of PHC as a Designated Agency
Maintains broad knowledge of developments related to Adult Protection Social Work by methods such as reviewing literature, consulting with internal and community experts within the field, evaluating clinical practice and participating in professional development activities in order to improve care through new practice models.
Participates in continuous quality improvement projects, collates data, analyzes trends, and recommends an action plan to the Professional Practice Leader, Social Work
Looks for opportunities to participates in or lead research projects related to clinical social work practice related to Adult Protection in collaboration with internal and external stakeholders.
Provides teaching and supervision to social work interns as assigned by methods such as providing guidance and the opportunity to observe and take an active role in the treatment of social work patients/residents.
Performs other related duties as assigned.