University Hospitals join statewide initiative to adopt child abuse identification protocols

Two University Hospitals facilities in Avon, Ohio, and Elyria, Ohio, will join a coalition of 19 hospitals in the state aiming to develop tools to reduce repeat instances of child abuse in infants who are six months old or younger, according to The Chronicle.

The Timely Recognition of Abusive Injuries collaborative builds on the requirement physicians use emergency room visits to determine if an injury or illness is related to repeat instances of child abuse. If a provider notices a minor, or sentinel injury, the physician will complete a comprehensive physical exam to ensure the injury does not constitute child abuse. The study conducted by the collaborative noted that sentinel injuries include bruising, fractures, head injuries, burns or oral injuries, among others.

The Ohio Attorney General's Office will issue a $1 million grant to fund TRAIN.

"It is our responsibility to protect children who are too young to understand their injuries or even to speak for themselves," said state Attorney General Mike DeWine in a statement. "By establishing evaluation techniques that identify early signs of child abuse, we hope to prevent more serious abuse in the future. The work we are doing with the children's hospitals and extending to the community hospitals…[is] lending a voice to children and [is] advocating for improved efforts when caring for Ohio's next generation."

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