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May 2018Vol. 19, No. 4Evidence-Based Practices, Strategies for Preventing Child Abuse-Related Fatalities and Injuries

A recent report from Upbring summarizes evidence-based interventions for preventing child fatalities and severe injuries from child abuse. The report points to areas that yield potential for reducing child abuse-related injury and death, including the following:

  • Lessons from the injury-control fieldRelated advancements in injury control offer an opportunity to inform prevention practice by learning from public health and medical experts.
  • Surveillance and assessment—Adjusting policy and practice to allow communities to access, merge, and use cross-sector data (i.e., child birth certificates, emergency calls to law enforcement, hospital emergency room visits, public health data) helps identify children at the greatest risk for maltreatment.
  • Evidence-based and promising practices—The report includes a table of interventions (e.g., Triple P, Nurse Family Partnership, The Period of Purple Crying) that lists their level of evidence, focus, and links to more information.
  • Promising strategies that lack evidence of effectiveness in preventing severe injury or death from child maltreatment—The report includes a table of interventions that need more information to be deemed as evidence based as well as details regarding intensity, duration, and combination of services.
  • Community and system design strategies—It is important to consider the larger context of child abuse-related injuries and death and associated risk factors to evaluate prevention strategies (e.g., the use of geographic analysis to identify neighborhoods with at-risk families, the promotion of protective community norms, income and housing supports, parent coaching, workload management, and case consultation mandates).

The report also recommends that federal agencies, state agencies, and foundations collaborate with other stakeholders to look at prevention measures for families at high risk of maltreatment. The report explains that this may entail collaborating with other sectors where primary prevention is a major priority, such as the public health field.

The report, Evidence-Based and Promising Interventions for Preventing Child Fatalities and Severe Child Injuries Related to Child Maltreatment, is available at (1,600 KB).