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7. Program Administration

The APSW, the manager of the program and the sponsoring agency have a joint responsibility to complete and maintain accurate and up-to-date records with respect to individuals involved in the program (active and closed).

In addition, there is a shared responsibility for maintaining accurate and current statistics on overall program volume and activity as required by the service agency and/or Ministry through its service contract.

Serious Occurrence Reporting

APSWs, the manager of the program and the sponsoring agency are responsible for following the procedures outlined in the Ministry of Community and Social Services’ policy for Serious Occurrence Reporting. The sponsoring agency should contact their program supervisor to obtain a copy of the policy and ensure that the APSW and manager of the program fully understand their responsibilities for reporting serious occurrences.

Regulation on Quality Assurance Measures

Service agencies and DSO organizations must comply with requirements outlined in Regulation 299/10, Quality Assurance Measures, under the SIPDDA. The Regulation describes requirements related to:

  • promoting social inclusion
  • developing individual support plans
  • help with day-to-day finances
  • health promotion, medical services and medication
  • preventing and reporting abuse
  • confidentiality and privacy
  • safety in agency-owned or operated places
  • keeping people safe
  • human resource practices
  • service records
  • behaviour intervention strategies
  • supporting the well-being of the individual.

It is incumbent on agencies providing an APSW program to ensure that APSWs are aware of the expectations outlined in the Quality Assurance Measures regulation. As well, it may be helpful for the APSW to inform new and existing clients about their obligation to report disclosures of abuse when it is believed that it may constitute a criminal offence.


Records about Individuals

Section 35 of the Services and Supports to Promote the Social Inclusion of Persons with Developmental Disabilities Act, 2008 provides the Ministry with authority to collect and use individuals’ personal information in some circumstances. For specific details, refer to the Act.

As well, any applicable privacy legislation must be adhered to in the collection, use and disclosure of personal information and personal health information, including obtaining consents and providing notice where required (e.g., the Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act; the Personal Health Information Privacy and Access Act.)

In order to create a consistent approach to the administration of the APSW program, the following records and information related to individual service delivery should be kept in an individual’s file:

  • Intake/referral: There should be detailed documentation of the individual’s request for assistance from the program, the nature of the involvement by the APSW (including the individual’s goals and needs) and involvement with other services (both government-funded and generic community services). The documents also should include personal information such as name, address and telephone numbers, employment details/sources of income and any documentation received from the DSO.
  • Notes/ Contact Reports: The reports should contain up-to-date information that is relevant and necessary to the understanding of the APSW’s involvement with the individual. The information must be detailed enough to allow a colleague of the primary APSW to provide support in the event of absence or change in staffing. The information could include the individual’s social history if relevant to the involvement by the APSW, significant contacts made with the individual or on their behalf, documentation of events in an advocacy situation.

    Reports should also document the progress being made towards helping the individual achieve their goals or changes to the individual’s needs or goals.
  • Consent to Obtain/Release Information: The APSW, the program manager and the sponsoring agency should carefully consider whether any information requested from the individual or others is directly related to the individual’s involvement with the program. It is the responsibility of the APSW to explain to the individual the reasons for requesting specific information and the intended use of the information before asking an individual to sign a consent form.
  • Closed Report: This report closes the involvement of the APSW and should include a summary of the involvement by the APSW, the reason for no longer actively working with the individual and recommendations, if any, for future action. If the file is permanently closed, the APSW’s sponsoring agency must notify their local DSO organization.
  • Other documents: Any other documents relevant to the support provided to the individual by the APSW (e.g. ODSP trustee documents).

Program Records and Statistics:

Sponsoring agencies must retain an individual’s records in a secure location in order to protect the privacy of the information.

Sponsoring agencies are required to collect statistics regarding its delivery of the APSW program. The agency and Ministry use this information to capture APSW service activity.

Data to be collected are included in the agency’s service contract with the Ministry and are explained in detail in the Transfer Payment Reporting Standards document. APSW program managers should discuss requirements and contact their Ministry program supervisor to ensure a thorough understanding of data collection requirements.