<- Home <- Arhive <- Vol. 23, Issue 2, June 2015

Rom J Leg Med23(2)151-156(2015)
© Romanian Society of Legal Medicine

Investigation of the awareness and knowledge about child abuse and negligence among doctors and nurses working in the east part of Turkey

I. Pakiş, F. Demir, G. Bektaş, U. Altun, S. Yıldırım

Abstract: Objective: This descriptive survey was conducted to evaluate the knowledge, awareness and actual professional experience of health professionals, regarding child abuse and neglect, and also to study training needs in this area.
Materials and Methods:This descriptive study was conducted between November 2013 - January 2014. The study group was a convenience sample comprising 471 health professionals (response rate: 50.1%) working four different hospitals which are located in Ağrı and Erzurum. In this descriptive survey, the health professionals were asked to complete an anonymous, structured questionnaire consisting of sociodemographic variables, questions on their knowledge, experience and training with child abuse and neglect. The correct answers given to the questions included in the questionnaire were added 1 point and knowledge score was calculated. Chi-square, t-testi and ANOVA were used to analyse data.
Results: Less than half of participants (38.6%) had experienced a case of child abuse or neglect in their practice. 58.4 % of participants thought that, “ difficulties encountered in legal process” could be the reason for low reporting rate. The mean total knowledge score related with child abuse and neglect was found to be 20.62. The level of knowledge was found to be significantly higher in women, health professionals who confronted with cases of abuse and who received education related with child abuse and neglect before graduation.
Conclusion: Guidelines regarding reporting suspected cases of child abuse and neglect must be established. Additional training is required to help health professionals to diagnose with certainty cases of child abuse and neglect in their practice.
Keywords: child abuse and neglect, physician, nurse, awareness, level of knowledge.

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