believe in the vision that 'children have the right to develop
and mature in a supportive, nurturing environment, and that they
have the need and the right to be protected from every form of
violence, victimization and neglect.' Unfortunately, we live in
a world where violence is everywhere, and at times is celebrated.
How does this exposure impact the young person who is still developing
and growing? Whether they are a direct victim, or a witness to
violence, the outcomes for children and youth are not limited to
the physical injuries they may suffer which can be permanent and
fatal, but they are also at risk for a number of medical, psychological
and social conditions associated with high morbidity and mortality.
These include, but are not limited to alcoholism, substance abuse,
depression, anxiety, heart disease, sexually transmitted infections,
unplanned pregnancies, teen dating violence, inter-partner violence
in adulthood, depression, posttraumatic stress disorder, violent
behaviors or repeated victimization, and suicide. Recognizing these
potential outcomes, it is clear that medical providers have the
responsibility to screen patients and families for violence exposure,
and to provide the necessary treatment, support and assistance.
These outcomes impact both public health and public safety, and
therefore, require a societal and community–level response that
focuses not only on intervention, but also prevention."
Care Settings, Safe Start Center
American Academy of Pediatrics
Pediatric care settings are perhaps the only places where children
are seen at multiple points during their childhood and adolescence.
These settings provide an excellent opportunity to screen families
for health and social risks (including exposure to violence), educate
parents, and refer children and families to services to prevent
or treat emotional or behavioral problems that may result from
exposure to violence.
Intimate Partner Violence: The Role
of the Pediatrician
of the Pediatrician in Youth Violence Prevention
Health Topics, Violence Prevention
The National Center for Child Traumatic Stress Network
Basics of Trauma Informed Care
Youth Violence Prevention, Training and Outreach Guide, American Medical Association
Dr. Jackson is the Division Chief of the Child
and Adolescent Protection Center in the Goldberg Center for Community
Pediatric Health of Children's National Medical Center, and Associate
Professor of Pediatrics at George Washington University. Dr. Jackson
has been with the Freddie Mac Foundation Child and Adolescent Protection
Center at Children's National Medical Center since 2000, prior
to which practiced general pediatrics and served as the Chief of
Pediatrics at a community health center in Baltimore, Maryland.
She is a board certified Child Abuse Pediatrician and an active
participant in the District of Columbia's Multidisciplinary Team
on Child Abuse. She is currently a member of the Children's Academy
of Pediatric Educators through which she is working to improve
the education of physicians on the recognition and response to
child physical abuse. Dr. Jackson is a member of the Section on
Child Abuse and Neglect of the American Academy of Pediatrics.