Data needs in child maltreatment response

Graham V Vimpani
Med J Aust 2014; 201 (3): 126-127. || doi: 10.5694/mja14.00650

Solving the problem begins with accurately measuring its occurrence

In a recent supplement to the American Journal of Preventive Medicine on approaches to measuring the incidence of the leading cause of fatal child maltreatment — inflicted brain injury — a staff member of the World Health Organization asserted that the major element missing from the global response to child maltreatment was “epidemiologically informed methods for monitoring its occurrence”.1 This view was reinforced when, in the year after its 2009 series on child maltreatment, The Lancet asked leading professionals in child health and welfare what question they most needed to be answered by the scientific published work. Their response was “Are trends in child maltreatment decreasing?”2

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  • Graham V Vimpani1,2

  • 1 Paediatrics and Child Health, University of Newcastle, Newcastle, NSW.
  • 2 NSW Kids and Families, NSW Ministry of Health, Sydney, NSW.

Competing interests:

No relevant disclosures.

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