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Reasonable suspicion in reporting child maltreatment: a survey among German healthcare professionals

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dc.contributor.author Berthold, O., Jud, A., Jarczok, M., Fegert, J. M., & Clemens, V.
dc.date.accessioned 2021-06-22T19:12:11Z
dc.date.available 2021-06-22T19:12:11Z
dc.date.issued 2021
dc.identifier.citation Berthold, O., Jud, A., Jarczok, M., Fegert, J. M., & Clemens, V. (2021). Reasonable suspicion in reporting child maltreatment: a survey among German healthcare professionals. Child and adolescent psychiatry and mental health, 15(1), 1-7. en_US
dc.identifier.uri https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8204433/pdf/13034_2021_Article_381.pdf
dc.identifier.uri http://hdl.handle.net/11212/5129
dc.description.abstract Background: With regular contacts to the general child population, healthcare professionals could play an important role in the detection of child maltreatment. However, a majority of child maltreatment cases go unnoticed by the healthcare system. Child protection legislations usually ofer terms like “reasonable suspicion” to corner a threshold that warrants reporting to child protection services (CPS) is defned as. The indistinct legal terminology leads to marked diferences in the interpretation of this threshold. Therefore, we aimed to systematically assess the understanding of reasonable suspicion and subsequent handling of cases in the German context. Methods: A cross-sectional online survey was conducted among 2485 physicians and psychotherapists working with children and adolescents. Field access was gained by German professional associations. Via case vignettes, predictors of thresholds for reporting were assessed. Results: The probability of a report to CPS increased positively with the degree of suspicion for maltreatment. However, even if participants were certain that child maltreatment occurred, 20% did not chose to report to CPS. Training in child protection lowered the professionals’ threshold for reasonable suspicion; experience with child protection cases and good knowledge of the legal framework increased the likelihood to report an alleged situation of child maltreatment to CPS. Conclusion: Our data show that a signifcant proportion of health care professionals are uncertain about estimating reasonable suspicion and on how to proceed when there are strong indications for child maltreatment Therefore, data point towards the relevance of training in child protection among healthcare professionals in order to improve detection and adequate handling of cases of child maltreatment en_US
dc.language.iso en en_US
dc.publisher Child and adolescent psychiatry and mental health en_US
dc.subject research en_US
dc.subject healthcare professionals en_US
dc.subject reporting en_US
dc.subject Germany en_US
dc.subject International Resources en_US
dc.subject child protection en_US
dc.title Reasonable suspicion in reporting child maltreatment: a survey among German healthcare professionals en_US
dc.type Article en_US


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