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attitudes, child abuse, forensic nursing, mandatory reporting, professionalism



  1. Lee, In Sook RN, PhD
  2. Kim, Kyoung Ja RN, PhD


Purpose: This study aimed to identify knowledge of child abuse, awareness of child abuse reporting, factors that influence attitudes toward mandatory reporting, and professionalism among a sample of pediatric nurses in Korea.


Methods: One hundred sixteen pediatric nurses working at two university hospitals in Korea took part in the study and completed self-administered questionnaires. The data were analyzed using descriptive statistics, t tests, analysis of variance, Pearson correlation coefficients, and hierarchical regression analysis.


Results: Knowledge of child abuse, awareness of child abuse reporting, and attitudes toward mandatory reporting were low. Regarding nursing professionalism, social perceptions had the lowest mean score and nursing autonomy had the highest mean score. Attitudes toward mandatory reporting significantly correlated with professionalism. In the hierarchical regression model, the influences of nursing autonomy and intentions to report child abuse on attitudes toward mandatory reporting were statistically significant (F = 2.176, p = .013), explaining 32% of the variation in attitudes toward mandatory reporting.


Conclusion: The results of this study could be used to improve systems and policies addressing child abuse and to further develop reporting procedures for identifying children at risk of abuse, to ensure their protection as a professional responsibility.