Child Abuse Task Force
Physicians, nurses, members of several hospitals, community volunteers and the Kentucky Child Fatality Review Board created the Child Abuse Task Force at Kosair Children’s Hospital in 2003 to address the many problems of child abuse in Kentucky. Unfortunately, KY is the number one state in the nation for deaths from child abuse. The group took on the mission to work collaboratively to prevent the devastating effects that child abuse has on children, families, and society by creating networks, advocating policies, and providing family-centered education.
One of the most pressing matters in which the Task Force is now engaged is pediatric head abuse trauma. Physicians and nurses have created a pilot program which will educate new mothers and fathers about shaken baby syndrome before they are discharged from the Norton Women’s Pavilion at Norton Hospital or Norton Suburban Hospital. The hope is to reduce the number of babies who die or live with life-long disabilities related to shaken baby syndrome.
The Task Force currently is examining ways to expand that program to other Kentucky hospitals and promoting legislation requiring shaken baby education to new parents. This legislation is similar to successful legislation passed in other states – legislation which has reduced the number of deaths and disabilities caused by shaken baby.
The Task Force also has developed a train-the-trainer program to create a network of people to educate groups about shaken baby syndrome and child abuse.