Identifying Child Physical Abuse: Who Is Reporting, and How Accurate Are Their Reports?

2.50
Hdl Handle:
http://hdl.handle.net/10755/622070
Category:
Full-text
Format:
Text-based Document
Type:
Presentation
Level of Evidence:
N/A
Research Approach:
N/A
Title:
Identifying Child Physical Abuse: Who Is Reporting, and How Accurate Are Their Reports?
Other Titles:
Pediatric Safety
Author(s):
Ho, Grace W. K.; Gross, Deborah; Bettencourt, Amie
Lead Author STTI Affiliation:
Pi Iota
Author Details:
Grace W. K. Ho, PhD, RN, Professional Experience: Dr. Ho is an Assistant Professor at The Hong Kong Polytechnic University School of Nursing. She was a Morton K. and Jane Blaustein Post-Doctoral Fellow in Psychiatric and Mental Health Nursing at Johns Hopkins School of Nursing in 2015. Her research focuses on understanding the intersections between parenting, culture, and child welfare. Author Summary: Dr. Grace Ho is an Assistant Professor at The Hong Kong Polytechnic University School of Nursing. Prior to joining HK PolyU in 2016, she was a Morton K. and Jane Blaustein Post-Doctoral Fellow in Psychiatric and Mental Health Nursing at Johns Hopkins School of Nursing. Her research focuses on understanding the intersections between parenting, culture, and child welfare, and disentangling these complex relationships and their effects on behavioral and mental health.
Abstract:

Purpose: Child physical abuse (CPA) is one of the most lethal forms of child maltreatment; being reported for suspected CPA alone substantially heightens the child’s risk for sustaining future fatal injuries (Putnam-Hornstein, Cleves, Licht, & Needell, 2013). Therefore, early and accurate identification of CPA is imperative to the protection and timely provision of services to children in need. In the U.S., professionals who are mandated to report suspected child maltreatment initiate the majority of child maltreatment reports (62%; U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, 2015). However, few studies have been conducted to describe the distribution of report source for CPA or how report sources may associate with the outcomes of these reports. Further, these relationships have only been investigated using reports made for children under age five (King, Lawson, & Putnam-Hornstein, 2013). This study addressed these gaps by (1) describing the distribution of report sources for CPA reports investigated by Child Protective Services; (2) examining the likelihood of CPA report substantiation by reporter type (i.e. professionals and nonprofessionals) and report source (i.e. occupation of the professional reporter); and (3) fully investigating the impact of the child's age on the relationships between report outcomes and report source.

Methods: In a national sample of 204,414 children birth to age 17 years who were reported and investigated for suspected CPA in 2013, the distribution of reporter type and report source were described. Multilevel logistic regression was used to predict report outcome (i.e. substantiated or unsubstantiated) based on the reporter type or report source, controlling for child, caregiver, and state-level characteristics. A report source x child age interaction term was added to assess the differential impact of child age on report outcome by source of report. Marginal effects using mean predicted probabilities were calculated to predict the probabilities of report substantiation based on reporter type and occupation.

Results: Approximately 13% of children reported for CPA were later confirmed to be victims of abuse. Professional reporters initiated 84% of all CPA reports, of which 20% were made by a healthcare provider or mental health professional. The odds of report substantiation were 1.6 times higher when initiated by a professional versus a nonprofessional. Compared to nonprofessionals, reports made by healthcare providers and legal/law enforcement personnel have a 2.6 and 3.3 times higher odds of being substantiated, respectively. However, reports made by even the best reporters (i.e. legal/law enforcement) only have a 26% chance of substantiation. Moreover, mental health professionals appeared to be less accurate reporters than nonprofessionals (OR=0.67; 95%CI=0.62, 0.73). Overall, the difference in likelihood of CPA report substantiation among professional and nonprofessional reporters diminish as the age of the reported child increases.

ConclusionIn 2013, fewer than 1 in 7 children reported for CPA were found to be victims of abuse. Although there are many reasons for an unsubstantiated report, reports that cannot be confirmed due to weak or insufficient evidence may add undue stress onto a child protection system that is already stretched thin. Importantly, reports made without sufficient cause may threaten family well-being and further endanger families that are already vulnerable. Because professional reporters initiate the vast majority of CPA reports, strategies that promote accurate reporting among professionals are warranted. Some of these strategies that are pertinent to the nursing profession will be described.

Keywords:
child maltreatment reporting; child physical abuse; child protection
Repository Posting Date:
24-Jul-2017
Date of Publication:
24-Jul-2017
Other Identifiers:
INRC17C12
Conference Date:
2017
Conference Name:
28th International Nursing Research Congress
Conference Host:
Sigma Theta Tau International
Conference Location:
Dublin, Ireland
Description:
Event Theme: Influencing Global Health Through the Advancement of Nursing Scholarship

Full metadata record

DC FieldValue Language
dc.language.isoen_USen
dc.type.categoryFull-texten
dc.formatText-based Documenten
dc.typePresentationen
dc.evidence.levelN/Aen
dc.research.approachN/Aen
dc.titleIdentifying Child Physical Abuse: Who Is Reporting, and How Accurate Are Their Reports?en_US
dc.title.alternativePediatric Safetyen
dc.contributor.authorHo, Grace W. K.en
dc.contributor.authorGross, Deborahen
dc.contributor.authorBettencourt, Amieen
dc.contributor.departmentPi Iotaen
dc.author.detailsGrace W. K. Ho, PhD, RN, Professional Experience: Dr. Ho is an Assistant Professor at The Hong Kong Polytechnic University School of Nursing. She was a Morton K. and Jane Blaustein Post-Doctoral Fellow in Psychiatric and Mental Health Nursing at Johns Hopkins School of Nursing in 2015. Her research focuses on understanding the intersections between parenting, culture, and child welfare. Author Summary: Dr. Grace Ho is an Assistant Professor at The Hong Kong Polytechnic University School of Nursing. Prior to joining HK PolyU in 2016, she was a Morton K. and Jane Blaustein Post-Doctoral Fellow in Psychiatric and Mental Health Nursing at Johns Hopkins School of Nursing. Her research focuses on understanding the intersections between parenting, culture, and child welfare, and disentangling these complex relationships and their effects on behavioral and mental health.en
dc.identifier.urihttp://hdl.handle.net/10755/622070-
dc.description.abstract<p><strong><strong>Purpose: </strong></strong><span>Child physical abuse (CPA) is one of the most lethal forms of child maltreatment; being reported for suspected CPA alone substantially heightens the child’s risk for sustaining future fatal injuries (Putnam-Hornstein, Cleves, Licht, & Needell, 2013). Therefore, early and accurate identification of CPA is imperative to the protection and timely provision of services to children in need. In the U.S., professionals who are mandated to report suspected child maltreatment initiate the majority of child maltreatment reports (62%; U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, 2015). However, few studies have been conducted to describe the distribution of report source for CPA or how report sources may associate with the outcomes of these reports. Further, these relationships have only been investigated using reports made for children under age five (King, Lawson, & Putnam-Hornstein, 2013). This study addressed these gaps by (1) describing the distribution of report sources for CPA reports investigated by Child Protective Services; (2) examining the likelihood of CPA report substantiation by reporter type (i.e. professionals and nonprofessionals) and report source (i.e. occupation of the professional reporter); and (3) fully investigating the impact of the child's age on the relationships between report outcomes and report source.</span></p> <p><strong>Methods: </strong>In a national sample of 204,414 children birth to age 17 years who were reported and investigated for suspected CPA in 2013, the distribution of reporter type and report source were described. Multilevel logistic regression was used to predict report outcome (i.e. substantiated or unsubstantiated) based on the reporter type or report source, controlling for child, caregiver, and state-level characteristics. A report source x child age interaction term was added to assess the differential impact of child age on report outcome by source of report. Marginal effects using mean predicted probabilities were calculated to predict the probabilities of report substantiation based on reporter type and occupation.</p> <p><strong>Results: </strong>Approximately 13% of children reported for CPA were later confirmed to be victims of abuse. Professional reporters initiated 84% of all CPA reports, of which 20% were made by a healthcare provider or mental health professional. The odds of report substantiation were 1.6 times higher when initiated by a professional versus a nonprofessional. Compared to nonprofessionals, reports made by healthcare providers and legal/law enforcement personnel have a 2.6 and 3.3 times higher odds of being substantiated, respectively. However, reports made by even the best reporters (i.e. legal/law enforcement) only have a 26% chance of substantiation. Moreover, mental health professionals appeared to be less accurate reporters than nonprofessionals (OR=0.67; 95%CI=0.62, 0.73). Overall, the difference in likelihood of CPA report substantiation among professional and nonprofessional reporters diminish as the age of the reported child increases.</p> <p><strong><strong>Conclusion</strong>: </strong>In 2013, fewer than 1 in 7 children reported for CPA were found to be victims of abuse. Although there are many reasons for an unsubstantiated report, reports that cannot be confirmed due to weak or insufficient evidence may add undue stress onto a child protection system that is already stretched thin. Importantly, reports made without sufficient cause may threaten family well-being and further endanger families that are already vulnerable. Because professional reporters initiate the vast majority of CPA reports, strategies that promote accurate reporting among professionals are warranted. Some of these strategies that are pertinent to the nursing profession will be described.</p>en
dc.subjectchild maltreatment reportingen
dc.subjectchild physical abuseen
dc.subjectchild protectionen
dc.date.available2017-07-24T17:15:58Z-
dc.date.issued2017-07-24-
dc.date.accessioned2017-07-24T17:15:58Z-
dc.conference.date2017en
dc.conference.name28th International Nursing Research Congressen
dc.conference.hostSigma Theta Tau Internationalen
dc.conference.locationDublin, Irelanden
dc.descriptionEvent Theme: Influencing Global Health Through the Advancement of Nursing Scholarshipen
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