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Clinical Science Brown Bag Series

Tuesday, November 14, 2017,
  • Location: Wilson Hall • 111 21St Ave S • Nashville, TN 37240
  • Room: 316

Matthew Morris, PhD

Family and Community Medicine

Meharry Medical College

Opportunities to Enhance the Effectiveness of School-Based Child Sexual Abuse Prevention Programs

One in ten children will experience child sexual abuse (CSA). CSA risk is influenced by individual, family, and neighborhood factors, underscoring the importance of multilevel prevention efforts that focus on children, their caretakers, and their communities. Schools are well-suited to large-scale, cost-effective delivery of child-focused CSA prevention programs. Programs such as ‘Safe@Last’ teach children how to recognize, respond to, and disclose CSA. A recent cluster randomized controlled trial of Safe@Last showed large effects on short-term knowledge gains; unfortunately, children at schools in counties with higher rates of substantiated abuse appeared to have benefitted less. This talk will (1) describe strengths and shortcomings of school-based CSA prevention efforts and (2) outline a strategy for enhancing their effectiveness in communities with both high CSA risk and limited access to supportive services.