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Facing suspected child abuse – what keeps Swedish general practitioners from reporting to child protective services?

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dc.contributor.author Talsma, M., Bengtsson Boström, K., & Östberg, A. L.
dc.date.accessioned 2015-07-22T20:20:13Z
dc.date.available 2015-07-22T20:20:13Z
dc.date.issued 2015
dc.identifier.citation Talsma, M., Bengtsson Boström, K., & Östberg, A. L. (2015). Facing suspected child abuse–what keeps Swedish general practitioners from reporting to child protective services?. Scandinavian journal of primary health care, 33(1), 21-26. en_US
dc.identifier.uri http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4377737/pdf/pri-33-21.pdf
dc.identifier.uri http://hdl.handle.net/11212/2352
dc.description.abstract The aim of this study was to examine the reporting of suspected child abuse among Swedish general practitioners (GPs), and to investigate factors influencing them in their decision whether or not to report to child protective services (CPS). Design: A cross-sectional questionnaire study. Setting: Primary health care centres in western Sweden. Subjects: 177 GPs and GP trainees. Main outcome measures: Demographic and educational background, education on child abuse, attitudes to reporting and CPS, previous experience of reporting suspected child abuse, and need of support. Results: Despite mandatory reporting, 20% of all physicians had at some point suspected but not reported child abuse. Main reasons for non-reporting were uncertainty about the suspicion and use of alternative strategies; for instance, referral to other health care providers or follow-up of the family by the treating physician. Only 30% of all physicians trusted CPS's methods of investigating and acting in cases of suspected child abuse, and 44% of all physicians would have wanted access to expert consultation. There were no differences in the failure to report suspected child abuse that could be attributed to GP characteristics. However, GPs educated abroad reported less frequently to CPS than GPs educated in Sweden. Conclusions: This study showed that GPs see a need for support from experts and that the communication and cooperation between GPs and CPS needs to be improved. The low frequency of reporting indicates a need for continued education of GPs and for updated guidelines including practical advice on how to manage child abuse. (Author Abstract) en_US
dc.language.iso en en_US
dc.publisher Scandinavian journal of primary health care en_US
dc.subject child abuse en_US
dc.subject child protective services en_US
dc.subject general practice en_US
dc.subject mandatory reporting en_US
dc.subject research en_US
dc.subject International Resources en_US
dc.subject Sweden en_US
dc.title Facing suspected child abuse – what keeps Swedish general practitioners from reporting to child protective services? en_US
dc.type Article en_US


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