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Spike in DFW Area Child Abuse Cases During Coronavirus Quarantine

Last week, Cook Children’s Hospital saw a spike in some very disturbing cases… child abuse.

The hospital reported six severe cases of child abuse, meaning physical abuse, with one death.

Normally, the hospital reports about eight cases a month, so the curve is going up significantly, but why?

The Coronavirus Effect

Right now, there is a shelter-in-place order in the city of Dallas.

That same order has been given in numerous cities and states across the country.

Doctors are starting to wonder just how much of an impact the quarantines are starting to have on the homelife of these children.

With most households having two working parents, these parents are not used to being around their children and having to entertain them non-stop all day, every day.

Dr. Jayne Coffman, the Medical Director of the CARE team at Cook Children’s Hospital, stated, “There’s no way for us to directly link that, but that’s the concern – are these families under more stress related to financial issues, whether it’s lost jobs or concerns for their jobs?

“We also saw similar types of things happen during the recession where, in our trauma department, the most common cause of trauma death in children was motor vehicle collisions.

“During the recession, that changed to abusive head trauma, and I don’t want to see that again.”

She also stated, “Thursday night, we had one child admitted with unfortunately, life-threatening injuries, which they succumbed to, as well as four other children in the emergency department at the same time who were treated and released.

“It was like, we have to reach out to the community.”

Shellie McMillon, the Chief Program Officer at the Alliance for Children, offered some advice to parents.

She stated, “I think, too, if you’re feeling really stressed and really feeling anger towards your kids – it’s OK, as long as they’re in a safe place, right?

“Kind of a safe spot in the house walk away and calm down.

“It’s OK to leave your child if they’re crying or something, if you feel like you’re at wit’s end.”

We can only hope this is an outlier and not going to be a new trend.

If you suspect child abuse, please report it to the Texas Department of Family and Protective Services at 800-252-5400.

Source: NBC DFW

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