Pinwheel garden observes Child Abuse Prevention Month

April 27, 2015 at 6:54 am Leave a comment

The Pinwheel Garden located outside of Penn State Hershey Children's Hospital.

The Pinwheel Garden located outside of Penn State Hershey Children’s Hospital.

In observance of Child Abuse Prevention Month, a pinwheel garden sits at the base of the statue in front of Penn State Hershey Children’s Hospital. The 197 pinwheels represent the number of children who were evaluated by the Child Protection Team of the Penn State Hershey Center for the Protection of Children in 2014.

The Center was created in 2011 and also includes the Transforming the Lives of Children (TLC) Clinic.

The Child Protection team sees children in both the Medical Center and the outpatient clinic sites for suspected physical abuse, neglect, or sexual abuse. Referrals come from community agencies such as Children and Youth Services (CYS) and from physicians in the community as well as the Children’s Hospital network.

”We help evaluate injuries and the medical condition of children,” said Dr. Kate Crowell, a pediatrician on the Child Protection Team. “We determine if injuries are consistent with the history provided, with a medical diagnosis or consistent with abuse/neglect.  We speak with families about their medical history and social history, identify potential safety risks that may exist, and assist medical providers with the care of their patients. We work in conjunction with CYS by providing them medical information that is pertinent to their investigation. CYS is involved with ensuring the safety of the home, with formulating safety plans (when necessary) and with communication with law enforcement.”

The Center’s TLC Clinic, which started in the fall, provides a medical home for children in out-of-home placement (foster or kinship care) and mental health services for children who have experienced trauma (abuse or neglect).  The mental health services include parent-child interaction therapy as well as trauma focused cognitive behavioral therapy.

The blue pinwheel is the symbol of Prevent Child Abuse America. For more information, visit preventchildabuse.org.

For More information on the Center for the Protection of Children, visit pennstatehershey.org/protection-of-children.

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