Discussion: Treating Childhood Abuse
In 2012, statistics in the United States indicated that state CPS agencies received 3.4 million referrals for child abuse and neglect. Of these, nearly 700,000 children were found to be victims of maltreatment: 18% were victims of physical abuse and 78% were victims of neglect (CDC, 2014). Child sexual abuse makes up roughly 10% of child maltreatment cases in the United States (CDC, 2014). The CDC considers sexual abuse at any age a form of violence. Child abuse of any kind can lead to an increased state of inflammatory markers in adulthood, as well as multiple physical illnesses and high-risk behavior such as alcoholism and drug abuse. If a PMHNP identifies child abuse, there may be a need to report the abuse to authorities. Once able to provide treatment, the PMHNP can be instrumental in reducing the long-term effects of child abuse.
In this Discussion, you recommend strategies for assessing for abuse and analyze influences of media and social media on mental health. You also evaluate the need for mandatory reporting of abuse.
To Prepare for this Discussion:
- Read the Learning Resources concerning treating childhood abuse.
- Read the Child Abuse Case Study in the Learning Resources.
- What strategies would you employ to assess the patient for abuse? Explain why you selected these strategies.
- How might exposure to the media and/or social media affect the patient?
- What type of mandatory reporting (if any) is required in this case? Why?