Magazine article Clinical Psychiatry News

Children Often Are Direct Victims in Families Reported for Violence

Magazine article Clinical Psychiatry News

Children Often Are Direct Victims in Families Reported for Violence

Article excerpt

SAN DIEGO -- Preliminary results from a study of Navy families reported for family violence suggest that 29%-52% of children in these families are direct victims, Rochelle Hanson, Ph.D., said at a conference sponsored by the Children's Center for Child Protection.

More than half of the children in these families experienced physical abuse, while about one-third experienced sexual abuse, said Dr. Hanson of the department of psychiatry at the Medical College of South Carolina, Charleston.

"The types of assault that these kids are experiencing are pretty severe," she said.

Dr. Hanson based her comments on preliminary results from the ongoing Navy Family Study, a prospective look at cases that are reported to the Navy's Family Advocacy Program, which is equivalent to civilian child protective services. Families get referred to the Family Advocacy Program because of partner violence, child physical abuse, or child sexual abuse.

Dr. Hanson and her associates interviewed the offending parents, the nonoffending parents, and the affected child 4-6 weeks after the initial report of abuse. Follow-up assessments occurred at 9 months and at 18 months. All children aged 7-17 were interviewed and completed a self-report. …

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