Child Abuse Prevention
All Crozer Health hospitals must report all cases of suspected child abuse and injuries inflicted upon a child to appropriate authorities, in accordance with the procedures set forth in this policy.
Child Abuse is:
- Serious physical or mental injury of a child which is not explained by the available medical history as being accidental;
- Sexual abuse or sexual exploitation of a child including sexual offenses defined under the Crimes Code (see list of crimes noted below and in definitions);
- Serious physical neglect of a child under 18 years of age if the injury, abuse or neglect endangers a child’s life or development or impairs the child’s functioning; and
- Actual bodily harm (including pregnancy) inflicted upon a child resulting from a crime committed by any person. Crimes include, but are not limited to, assault, harassment, indecent assault, aggravated indecent assault, involuntary deviate sexual intercourse, statutory sexual assault, rape, indecent exposure, incest, promoting prostitution, and pornography (all of which are defined below).
NOTE: No child shall be deemed to be physically or mentally abused if the only reason abuse is suspected is because s/he is being treated only by spiritual means, by an accredited practitioner, through prayer alone in accordance with the beliefs and practices of a recognized church or religious denomination, even if the child is not provided medical treatment. [Should you have any concerns or questions when dealing with such a situation, contact Risk Management and/or the Legal Department for guidance.]
NOTE: No child shall be deemed to be physically or mentally abused solely on the grounds of environmental factors which are beyond the control of the person responsible for the child’s welfare such as inadequate housing, furnishings, income, clothing, and medical care.
Persons required to report include: Physicians, interns and residents; hospital personnel engaged in the admission, examination, care or treatment of persons; any other person conducting, managing or in charge of any hospital or pharmacy; any other person in charge of any ward or part of a hospital; medical examiners; coroners; funeral directors; dentists; chiropractors; psychologists; podiatrists; registered nurses; licensed practical nurses; Emergency Medical Services personnel; Christian Science practitioners; members of the clergy; social services workers; day care center workers and other child care or foster care workers; mental health professionals; law enforcement officials, and school employees.* Unless otherwise noted, the term “child” as used in this policy means those under the age of 18.
*Mandated reporters as listed above must receive training in Child Abuse Recognition and Reporting.
Warning signs of child abuse and neglect
- Nervousness around adults
- Aggression toward others
- Inability to stay awake or concentrate for extended periods
- Sudden, dramatic changes in personality or activities
- Acting out sexually or showing interest in sex that is not age-appropriate
- Frequent or unexplained bruises or injuries
- Low self-esteem
- Poor hygiene
Potential risk factors for parents
- Isolation from family or community
- Difficulty controlling anger or stress
- Substance abuse
- Lack of interest in the care, nourishment or safety of their children
- Serious economic, housing or personal problems
More Information, To Report Abuse
Because child abuse and neglect occurs in every community, Crozer Healthis proud to partner with many local organizations as part of the “Stand for Children” campaign to help prevent child abuse.
For more information about preventing child abuse, or to report an instance of abuse:
Stand for Children
Pennsylvania Child Line
Delaware County Children and Youth Services
Upper Darby: 610-713-2000