Recognizing and reporting child physical abuse: a cross sectional survey of primary health care professionals

Anne Lazenbatt, Ruth Freeman

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

85 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Objectives: To assess primary health care professionalsâ?? ability to recognise child physical abuse within their everyday practice. Design: Cross-sectional survey Participants: A stratified random sample of 979 nurses, doctors, and dentists working in primary care in NI. Results: Four hundred and thirty one primary health care professionals responded [44% response rate]. Thirty two per cent were doctors, 35% were dentists and 33% were nurse professionals. The mean age was 41.63 years. Fifty-nine percent (251) stated that they had seen a suspicious case of child physical abuse and 47% (201) said they had reported it. Seventy-two per cent (310) of participants were aware of the mechanisms for reporting child physical abuse. Ability and willingness to recognise and report abuse discriminated the three professions. Conclusions: The findings suggest a professional reluctance to engage in recognising and reporting abuse. Barriers could be reduced by providing training and professional support for the primary care professionals.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)227-237
Number of pages11
JournalJournal of Advanced Nursing
Volume56
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2006

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