Protective Services


Help older Pennsylvanians live a life of dignity and respect

Most of us would rather not talk about elder abuse, but as many as 1 in 20 older adults are victims of abuse.   Elder abuse happens everywhere...across the country, across the state, even across the street.  You can help by learning how to identify elder abuse, how to report it, and even how to prevent it.

Abuse can take many forms including physical abuse, such as hitting or pushing,  sexual abuse, psychological abuse, caregiver neglect, self neglect, or financial exploitation.  Many victims are frail and vulnerable, cannot help themselves, and depend on others for help with basic needs.  Many times the abuser lives with the older adult or is the caregiver for the older adult.

WhaELDER ABUSE is not always easy to identify.  People are often afraid, ashamed, or unable to ask for help. 

Watch for:


         Bruises and broken bones in unusual places, or that occur repeatedly

         Unexplained weight loss

         Confusion or disorientation

         Unpaid bills, utility shut-off notices,

      lack of food, clothing or essentials

         Stained or bloody underclothing

         Continued sadness or depression,

      lack of interest in activities,  sleeping

      too much or too little

         Poor hygiene, dehydration or mal-nutrition, inadequate or unsanitary environment

         Unexplained changes in bank accounts

         Other unusual events that canít be explained

  In Pennsylvania there is an Older Adult Protective Service Law.  Highlights of the law include:

         24 hour availability to receive reports

         Voluntary reporting, except for employees of nursing homes, personal care homes, domiciliary care homes, home health agencies and adult living centers, who are mandated reporters

         Court orders for involuntary intervention if the person is unable to understand the consequences of their decisions, and is in imminent risk of death or serious physical harm

         Immunity from liability for reporters

      who have acted in good faith

A person may be in need of protective services if the person meets all of the following conditions:

         60 years of age or older

         Needs help from another person to meet needs for health and personal safety

         Has no responsible caregiver

         Imminent risk of death or serious physical harm.

If you suspect mistreatment of an older adult, you should call the Area Agency on Aging at 717-242-0315 or 1-800-348-2277 during normal business hours, or 717-242-9454 after hours and on weekends.  You will be connected with Protective Services staff to report your concerns.  By law ALL REPORTS and REPORTERíS NAMES ARE KEPT CONFIDENTIAL.  Your name will not be mentioned during the investigation.

 To inquire about Protective Services or to make a report, contact:

Mifflin-Juniata Area Agency on Aging, Inc.

249 W. 3rd St.

Lewistown, PA 17044


717-242-9454 (Hotline)

717-242-0315 or







Mifflin-Juniata Area Agency on Aging, Inc. - 249 West 3rd Street,  Lewistown, PA 17044 - (717) 242-0315 or Toll Free in PA 1800-348-2277 Send questions or comments about website to