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Difficulties faced by public health nurses involved in prevention of child abuse

  • Hashimoto Hiroko
    Department of Child Health and Nursing, Institute of Biomedical Sciences, Tokushima University Graduate School, Tokushima, Japan
  • Takahashi Kumi
    Department of Child Health and Nursing, Institute of Biomedical Sciences, Tokushima University Graduate School, Tokushima, Japan

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Abstract

<p>Aims:Child abuse is an important global issue. Public Health Nurses(PHNs)play a vital role in supporting children and their families to prevent child abuse. Considering the complex nature of child abuse, PHNs are likely to encounter various difficulties and supporting them is necessary. This study aimed to identify factors influencing the difficulties faced by PHNs in prevention of child abuse, and to understand the relationship between the PHN's personal attributes and the difficulties faced.</p><p>Method:A cross‐sectional survey design was used in which 250 PHNs involved in prevention of child abuse participated. They were from public health centers and municipalities all over Japan. Data collected were analyzed using exploratory factor analysis.</p><p>Results:Six factors on the difficulties that PHNs faced were extracted and identified as:“support of parents and their families facing problems," “process of assessing the problem and linking to support," “cooperation with relevant organizations," “ability as a PHN to provide support," “collaboration within the workplace," and “support for abused children." These difficulties were related to the PHNs' number of years of experience, their current work position, training on abuse, and the number of child abuse cases they encountered.</p><p>Conclusion:PHNs encounter various difficulties in the process of handling child abuse cases, but not all of them experience these difficulties in the same way. The results suggest that it is essential to focus on the nature of these difficulties depending on the personal characteristics of PHNs in order to provide effective support.</p>

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