Abused Children as a Vulnerable Population

Topics: Child abuse, Health care, Neglect Pages: 9 (2929 words) Published: August 27, 2013
Abused Children as a Vulnerable Population
Nicole Correia
NUR/440
May 26, 2013
Leslie Rowan

Abused Children as a Vulnerable Population
As a vulnerable population, abused children are at higher risk for suicide depression, aggression, delinquency, learning disorders, and dissociative disorders when compared to non-abused children (Weitzman, 2005). If not acknowledged and treated, abused children can have more serious mental problems as they age. For example, being an abusive relationship, suicidal ideations, substance abuse, and long term physical and mental illness. This paper will define the vulnerable population as it relates to abused children as well as demographic information on a national and state level. When caring for abused children there are many ways health care professionals can have a difficult time dealing with this abused population. The Health-Promoting Lifestyle Profile (HLPL-II) is defined and examined as an assessment tool to distinguish behavior and knowledge on a number of health and wellness dimensions. Vulnerable Popluation

Definition
A vulnerable population is identified and defined as a group of people who have needs that are not being met or they have difficulty meeting those needs. Vulnerable populations include the economically disadvantaged, racial, and ethnic minorities, the uninsured, children, the elderly, the homeless, those with human immunodeficiency virus (HIV), and those with other chronic health conditions, including severe mental illness (American Journal of Managed Care).  Mistreated youth does not have the accessibility to reach out for assist related to their young age group and underdevelopment of knowing right from wrong. Abused Children

There are multiple types of abuse a child is susceptible too. According to the American Humane Association, the most prevalent types of abuse are neglect, physical, and sexually abuse. The mistreatment that an abused child goes through will have a long last effect on their social and mental well-being if not addressed promptly. Most child sexual abusers are men, and may be respected members of the community drawn to settings where they gain easy access to children like schools, clubs and churches. Abusers come from all age groups, races, religions and socioeconomic classes. Most victims know and trust their abusers. It is not strangers children have to fear most. In most cases the child will exhibit signs of flashbacks routinely at night, nightmares, and insomnia. Once the child has been abused there are multiple barriers to assist the child in getting help. For example, denial, fear, shame, or not being able to remember the abuse. According to NCANDS whose latest statistics are for 2005 an estimated 3.3 million referrals of child abuse or neglect were received by public social service. Of these referrals, 899,000 children were confirmed to be victims of abuse or neglect (U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, 2007). That means about 12 out of every 1,000 children up to age 18 in the United States were found to be victims of maltreatment in 2005 (USDHHS, 2007). Demographics of Mental Illness

Boys and girls are equally likely to suffer maltreatment. In 2005, 47.3 percent of child victims were male, and 50.7 percent were female. Victimization rates were highest among the youngest population of children, birth to 3 years, at a rate of 16.5 per 1,000 children (USDHHS, 2007).In 2005, 49.7 percent of children who were maltreated were white, 23.1 percent were African American, and 17.4 percent were Hispanic. Approximately 10 percent of the children in this country have a disability or chronic illness. The incidence of abuse and neglect among these children is twice as high as it is among average children (Child Welfare Information Gateway, 2006).Child victims who were reported with disabilities accounted for almost 8 percent of all victims of child abuse and neglect in the 39 states that reported this type of data (USDHHS,...
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