• Many pediatricians are being called on to undertake expanded roles in the field of child abuse and neglect, whether as a practicing pediatrician, a hospital-based child abuse consultant, or as a child protection team pediatrician. The practicing pediatrician must consider the diagnosis of child abuse and neglect, confirm the diagnosis, report all suspected cases to child protective services, hospitalize any abused child who needs protection, and provide preventive services. The hospital-based child abuse consultant should provide consultation to primary physicians, report seriously injured cases for the primary physician or surgeon, provide expert medical testimony on difficult to prove cases, teach house staff and medical students about child abuse and neglect, and improve treatment services for abused children who are hospitalized. The child protection team pediatrician will usually become involved in the broader problem of improving team decision making and the interagency system that deals with child abuse and neglect.
(Am J Dis Child 133:691-696, 1979)