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NCJ Number: 66203 Find in a Library
Title: PERSPECTIVE ON CHILDHOOD SEXUAL ABUSE
Journal: SOCIAL WORK  Volume:25  Issue:2  Dated:(MARCH 1980)  Pages:128-131
Author(s): J A SHAMROY
Corporate Author: National Assoc of School Workers
United States of America
Date Published: 1980
Page Count: 4
Sponsoring Agency: National Assoc of School Workers
Washington, DC 20005
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: THE PROCEDURE AT THE CINCINNATI CHILDREN'S HOSPITAL FOR IDENTIFYING SEXUALLY ABUSED CHILDREN AND THE FOLLOWUP SERVICES NECESSARY FOR THEIR PROTECTION AND EMOTIONAL ADJUSTMENT ARE DESCRIBED.
Abstract: IN 1977, 292 CHILDREN RANGING IN AGE FROM 3 WEEKS TO ALMOST 15 YEARS WERE TREATED AT THE HOSPITAL FOR SUSPECTED CHILD ABUSE. OF THESE, 78 WERE TREATED FOR COMPLAINTS OR SYMPTOMS OF SEXUAL ABUSE, OVER 5 TIMES AS MANY AS THE NUMBER TREATED IN 1976. THE HOSPITAL'S CHILD ABUSE TEAM IS COMPOSED OF SOCIAL WORKERS, PHYSICIANS, AND A CHILD PSYCHIATRIST. IN ADDITION, THE TEAM USES CONSULTANTS FROM THE CINCINNATI POLICE DEPARTMENT AND THE HAMILTON COUNTY WELFARE DEPARTMENT. THE TEAM MEETS ON A WEEKLY BASIS TO REVIEW ALL CASES OF CHILD ABUSE AT THE HOSPITAL, COORDINATE FOLLOWUP SERVICES, PROVIDE PEER SUPPORT AND SUGGESTIONS, CLARIFY PROBLEM AREAS IN THE COMMUNITY SERVICE PROGRAMS AND COORDINATE EDUCATIONAL SERVICES TO THE COMMUNITY. FURTHERMORE, HOSPITAL PERSONNEL WORK TOGETHER TO EXPLORE THOROUGHLY ALL COMPLAINTS OF ALLEGED CHILD SEXUAL ABUSE. FOR EXAMPLE, A CHILD VERBAL HISTORY OF ABUSE, EVEN WHEN PHYSICAL EVIDENCE IS NOT PRESENT, IS THOROUGHLY INVESTIGATED. IF A CHILD HAS VENEREAL DISEASE, THE SOURCE IS ASSUMED TO BE SEXUAL CONTACT AND IS INVESTIGATED ACCORDINGLY. CHILDREN ARE ENCOURAGED TO USE DOLLS AND DRAWINGS TO COMMUNICATE THEIR EXPERIENCES. OFTEN, ONLY ONE PROFESSIONAL SITS IN THE ROOM WITH THE CHILD, WHILE OTHER MEMBERS OF THE TEAM SIT OUT OF SIGHT AND LISTEN. THE CHILD ABUSE TEAM WORKS CLOSELY WITH THE YOUTH AID SECTION OF THE POLICE DEPARTMENT AND CHILD PROTECTIVE AGENCIES TO INSURE THAT A FAMILY REFERRED BY THE HOSPITAL WILL NOT BE LOST IN FOLLOWUP. ALL BUT 6 OF THE 78 CHILDREN TREATED IN 1977 RETURNED TO THEIR MOTHER'S HOME; THEREFORE, THE MOTHER OR OTHER PRIMARY CARETAKER MUST BE GIVEN HELP IN PROTECTIVE PLANNING AND GIVEN THE OPPORTUNITY TO VERBALIZE HER OWN ANXIETIES AND FEELINGS OF GUILT. A FAMILY APPROACH SEEMS TO BE THE BEST METHOD OF TREATMENT. DURING THE COURT PROCEEDINGS, THE AGENCY SOCIAL WORKER SHOULD SUPPORT THE FAMILY AND EXPLAIN THE COURT PROCEDURE. A TABLE, NOTES, AND REFERENCES ARE INCLUDED. (PRG)
Index Term(s): Abused children; Child abuse detection; Child abuse situation remedies; Crimes against children; Family counseling; Incest; Medical and dental services; Ohio; Psychological victimization effects; Rape; Sex offenses; Sexual assault; Sexual assault victims; Statutory rape; Victim medical assistance
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