The Indiana Recognizing and Reporting Child Abuse and Neglect Training educates dental healthcare providers (DHCP) on the signs of child abuse and neglect and how mandatory reporters must report child abuse and neglect cases.
The first step in preventing child abuse and neglect is recognizing the signs. Undoubtedly, if you notice a sign of child maltreatment occurring within a family, it is important to take a closer look at the situation.
There is a Federal law known as the Child Abuse Prevention and Treatment Act (CAPTA). This act defines sexual abuse as the employment or use of any child to engage in or assist any other person to engage in any sexually explicit conduct or simulation of such conduct.
What you’ll learn
- Overview of child abuse and neglect
- Types of child abuse and neglect
- Signs of abuse
- Reporting requirements
Course length: 1 hour; CEU: 1.
Languages: American English
Key features: Audio narration, learning activity, and post-assessment
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Child Abuse and Neglect
Child abuse and neglect can come in many forms, such as physical abuse. Physical abuse is a non-accidental injury to a child caused by a person responsible for the child. Types of physical abuse include punching, beating, and kicking.
It is important to understand the difference between physical discipline and abuse, which this course covers. Physical abuse can range from minor bruises to severe fractures, and can even be deadly in some cases. Moreover, having an in-depth understanding and situational awareness of signs of physical abuse and other forms of neglect is crucial in protecting young patients.
Sexual Abuse and Other Forms of Neglect
Several activities are forms of sexual abuse. Inappropriate touching and sexual conduct are some examples of sexual abuse. However, children may also face emotional or psychological abuse. Emotional abuse is when a caregiver’s behavior impairs a child’s emotional development or sense of self-worth. Emotional abuse can take several forms and can be difficult to prove. This makes it hard for child protective services to intervene. Other types of abuse that a child might be subject to include abandonment or neglect. When a child is abandoned by a caregiver, they are more likely to incur serious harm or threats to their health and safety. Children need adequate support to develop fully, and a lack of parental presence can have detrimental impacts on child outcomes.
Signs of Child Abuse
There are often several signs of physical abuse that victims exhibit. Here are a few of them:
Unexplained injuries are a common sign of abuse. These could include burns, bites, or bruises. Additionally, if you notice that the child has fading bruises or other noticeable marks after a period of time since their last visit, this could indicate abuse. Children may also seem scared, anxious, or depressed.
A big tell-tale sign of abuse is if the child seems frightened of their parents and protests leaving with them. They might be scared of adults in general.
Children may also exhibit other physiological signs if they are abused. These could include changes in eating or sleeping habits. Most importantly, listen to a child if they report that they are abused. Pay attention to parents’ behaviors, and watch out for aggressive tendencies. Many times, abusers will try to explain away injuries, so it is important to remain vigilant in protecting the child.
Signs of Sexual Abuse
There are several signs that a child may be a victim of sexual abuse. Physical ailments are common, such as difficulty walking, bleeding, or bedwetting.
Additionally, the child may become isolated and withdrawn. Alternatively, they may experience a sudden change in appetite. A major red flag is if a child has inappropriately advanced knowledge of sexual behaviors.
Reporting Child Abuse in Indiana
Dental healthcare personnel must report instances of abuse. If there is any reason to believe that a child is a victim of abuse or neglect, you must report it. Dental healthcare personnel have an institutional responsibility to report such cases. By working in a medical facility, personnel are taking on the role of mandated reporters. Therefore, they must report cases of abuse to their fullest capacity. Individuals can make reports to the Department of Child Services or to a law enforcement agency.
You should also notify managers and supervisors when making a report. It is crucial that managing staff are aware of the circumstances occurring. Notify these individuals immediately. Managers and supervisors can also make reports to law enforcement agencies if necessary.
Reporting Abuse Properly
At this time, the Indiana Recognizing and Reporting Child Abuse and Neglect Training course enhances patient safety outcomes by educating dental healthcare personnel on proper reporting procedures in child abuse and neglect cases. It’s for everyone’s convenience that an online training course on Recognizing and Reporting Child Abuse and Neglect is available. The course is highly interactive and engaging and can be done in your preferred setting and pace. You may access interactive bite-sized episodes that are intended to be watched using any device you prefer.
This particular course helps dental healthcare personnel understand the proper standards for making a report of abuse or neglect. Moreover, this course discusses how to recognize the signs of abuse in a child. It is crucial that by the end of the Recognizing and Reporting Child Abuse and Neglect course, the participants have an in-depth understanding of their role in protecting children from abuse and neglect.
Making a Report
The written report must include the name and contact information of the person making the report. This is referred to as disclosure of reporter identity. The subject of the report will receive the report with confidentiality maintained.
The identity of the person making the report will not be revealed to the subject of the report. Furthermore, the contents of the report will only be shared with appropriate and necessary individuals.
Reports may be made available to parents or guardians of the child named in the report. Complete this training to learn the required elements that your report must include.
Helping Victims By Reporting
Take the situation seriously if a child tells you they are being abused. We must protect the safety of children first. The training includes tips for steps that reporters can make. For example, it can be helpful to encourage the child to talk about what happened. By assuring them that they are in a safe space, children will feel more comfortable talking about their experiences.
Online Recognizing and Reporting Child Abuse and Neglect Training
A published study (Roberts, 2022) revealed that interactive techniques such as the use of videos, group discussions, and the use of real-world examples were more effective training strategies. They all stood out and were easily remembered by the participants. This contributes to the awareness of what training design and delivery work best for future training.