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Early Recognition of Child Physical Abuse: An Overview for Emergency Nurses and Healthcare Providers
Child physical abuse is a significant public health problem in the United States. Studies show emergency healthcare providers (HCPs) do not sufficiently or consistently screen children for abuse due to lack of knowledge or confidence in screening for and detecting child physical abuse. This can result in missed cases of abuse. If abuse goes undetected, the child’s risk for subsequent re-injury and death increases significantly – as high as 50%. The purpose of this presentation is to increase early recognition of child physical abuse by emergency nurses and other emergency healthcare providers. The presentation will provide a brief overview of child physical abuse, detail the risk factors and red flags for physical abuse, review suspicious childhood injuries that are concerning for physical
abuse, introduce the Escape instrument as a validated tool to screen children for physical abuse, and discuss the essential elements that are required for documentation of suspected child physical abuse. Participants will have the opportunity to apply the Escape instrument to multiple case studies to ensure accurate understanding of the questions and interpretation of the screening results. Additionally, an example screening protocol will be reviewed to promote formalized screening programs in all healthcare facilities.
Presenter: Sheri M. Carson, DNP, RN, CPN, CPNP-PC.
Learner Outcome: Upon completion of this course, you will be able to identify common risk factors, “red flags”, and injuries suspicious for child physical abuse. Demonstrate proper use of the Escape Instrument to screen for child physical abuse in the emergency department.
ANCC Disclosure: The planners and presenters of this course have no conflicts of interest and there was no commercial support of this activity. The course will provide 0.36 contact hour of CNE, upon complete review of
course module, successful completion of quiz, and submitting an evaluation. Course expires 1/31/2023.
The Emergency Nurses Association is
accredited as a provider of nursing continuing professional
development by the American Nurses
Credentialing Center’s Commission on
Association is approved by the California Board
of Registered Nursing, Provider
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