Fort Hamilton Hospital is joining 18 hospitals across the state in a collaborative effort to reduce the occurrence of child abuse in infants six months and younger.
Ohio Attorney General Mike DeWine funded the Timely Recognition of Abusive Injuries (TRAIN) Collaborative with a $1 million grant to Ohio Children’s Hospital Association. The TRAIN Collaborative has developed several tools that, once implemented by medical providers, may significantly reduce repeat instances of child abuse.
“We are pleased to join this collaborative effort that will help protect the most vulnerable in our society,” says Michael Mewhirter, president of Fort Hamilton Hospital. “The tools and information from the TRAIN Collaborative will help us significantly increase detection and reduce reoccurrence of child abuse.”
One of the Collaborative’s completed milestones includes developing a comprehensive list of more than 50 different sentinel injuries. These are minor injuries known to the medical provider, such as bruising, fractures, head injuries, abdominal injuries, burns, genital injuries and oral injuries, that should prompt concern that the child is being abused.
To ensure sentinel injuries are not missed by medical providers, the Collaborative developed a recommended comprehensive physical examination for infants under six months of age that includes examination of the face, mouth, ears, neck, torso, genitals, and buttocks.
If a medical provider discovers a sentinel injury, there is now a recommended protocol or “bundle of care,” which was developed by the TRAIN Collaborative. The bundle of care assists in the identification of abuse and ensures the infant receives appropriate follow-up care. The bundle of care includes a skeletal survey of the infant, psychosocial assessment of the caregivers, and pediatric consultation.