April is Child Abuse Prevention month: How you can report suspected child abuse

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. — A shocking statistic reveals that in 2020, child abuse was the second-leading cause of traumas at Wolfson Children’s Hospital.

It landed behind falls and before car crashes.

To kick off Child Abuse Prevention month, Action News Jax spoke with Dr. Jennifer Andrews.

She’s a fellow at UF Health Jacksonville’s child protection team and a medical staff member at Wolfson Children’s Hospital.

The hospital staff is trained to look for signs of abuse. Andrews said that many cases of child abuse won’t always be obvious physicals signs.

The signs you need to be aware of that may warrant reporting are bruises or injuries.

Bruises on a child who can’t move or bruises in spots not typically seen in common injuries (butt, cheeks, back and thighs) are what to look out for.

Injuries on both sides of a kid’s body or in patterns, like belt marks or handprints, can also be reason to raise a red flag.

If you suspect child abuse, call the Florida abuse Hotline at 1-800-962-2873 or click here to file a report online.

Wolfson Children’s Hospital has “positive parenting” resources online.