Pediatricians at Miller Children’s Hospital Long Beach Shine Light on Child Abuse
April 10, 2012
Sandra Murray, M.D., FAAP, medical director, Child Abuse and Protection Team, Miller Children’s.
Research conducted by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has proven that a large percentage of American adults who suffer from challenging health, emotional and social issues today, had negative experiences in childhood. These negative experiences impact their ability to work, create positive relationships and thrive in other areas of life in adulthood.
April is National Child Abuse Prevention Month and with the long-term impact of positive parenting in mind, Miller Children’s Hospital Long Beach is commemorating the awareness month by reinforcing the message that, early recognition, prevention and treatment of child abuse is crucial in minimizing its long term effects. This month and throughout the year, Miller Children’s encourages all individuals and organizations to play a role in making the City of Long Beach and the surrounding communities a better place for children and families.
“Being able to recognize child abuse and not miss the signs is crucial,” says Sandra Murray, M.D., FAAP, Medical Director, Child Abuse and Protection Team, Miller Children’s. ”If you don’t recognize abuse and the child goes back to the same environment, they are at a greater risk of being reinjured or even killed.”
National Child Abuse Prevention Month is a time to acknowledge the important role that communities and medical professionals play in protecting children’s well-being. Identifying early signs of child abuse and focusing on ways to build and promote the protective factors, in every interaction with children and families, is what Miler Children’s hopes to accomplish.
“My mission is to educate parents on things to do when they get frustrated so they do not harm their kids,” says Dr. Murray. “I also want to raise awareness to physicians and our care teams of the signs they can look for, such as injuries that are subtle, which can be easily overlooked. As a major regional health care provider, it is our responsibility to prevent child abuse from escalating by intervening early and acting on the subtle signs.”
Child abuse can be prevented. Miller Children’s promotes nurturing parent‐child interactions and fostering early learning opportunities to support child development and healthy family relationships ‐ the very actions that help to prevent child abuse and neglect. By ensuring that parents have the knowledge, skills and resources they need to care for their children, we can help promote children’s social and emotional well-being and prevent child maltreatment within families and communities.