Term of Award
Master of Science in Nursing (M.S.N)
Document Type and Release Option
Thesis (open access)
School of Nursing
Carol J. Strickland
Committee Member 1
Committee Member 2
Thorough and detailed forensic medical examinations on sexually abused children can result in findings that make stronger cases against alleged perpetrators involved in child sexual abuse. A retrospective chart review was conducted of 1561 child abuse cases occurring in the Middle Judicial Circuit of Georgia during a 3-year period. Charts were reviewed to assess whether or not the child received a forensic medical examination and if the examination was performed by a trained or a non-trained forensic examiner. Court conviction data were obtained from the office of the district attorney in order to compare conviction rates to the forensic medical examining training. Of 1561 child abuse charts reviewed, 756 (48.4%) were sexual abuse cases. The major finding that emerged during the research, whether or not the perpetrator was convicted, was the surprising lack of forensic medical examinations being performed on children who were victims of sexual abuse. In addition, the majority of cases were never even referred to the district attorney's office for prosecution. A corollary and serendipitous finding was the emotional healing that began to take place as a result of the child receiving a forensic medical examination.
Bragg, Leila Smith, "Relationship Between Conviction Rates of Child Abuse Perpetrators and Forensic Medical Examinations Performed By Trained Versus Non-Trained Examiners on Victims of Child Sexual Abuse" (2005). Electronic Theses & Dissertations. 68.