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Child Maltreatment Risk Assessments: An Evaluation Guide

NCJ Number
Sue Righthand Ph.D.; Bruce Kerr Ph.D.; Kerry Drach PsyD.
Date Published
225 pages
This book is designed to assist clinicians in conducting forensic risk assessment in child maltreatment cases.
Child maltreatment risk assessments pertain to cases of documented child maltreatment. The procedures for forensic child maltreatment clinical evaluations should not be confused with forensic investigative assessments. In child maltreatment risk assessments referral questions typically involve an evaluation of factors that may increase or decrease the risk of continued maltreatment. Chapter 1 provides definitions of child maltreatment and abuse. Chapter 2 describes the impact of child maltreatment on attachment security. The impact of physical abuse, sexual abuse, psychological maltreatment, exposure to family violence, neglect, multiple forms of child maltreatment, marginal maltreatment, and mediating factors are discussed. Chapter 3 describes the problems and strategies for assessing violence, historical or developmental factors, personal or dispositional factors, clinical or symptom factors, and current situation and contextual factors. Chapter 4 details risk management strategies, such as parenting training, ecobehavioral programs, child-centered services and treatment interventions, and individual therapy with parents. This chapter also covers the subjects of abuse-focused interventions, parents with mental retardation, substance abuse, mental health interventions, relapse prevention, and facilitating parent-child relationships and motivation for positive change. Chapter 5 provides an introduction to forensic assessments and highlights issues important for conducting and writing high-quality, ethical evaluations in child maltreatment cases. 423 references, index