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Keywords:

  • children;
  • health promotion;
  • nurses;
  • nursing;
  • prevention;
  • violence

Aims and objectives.  To discuss the Health Promotion Model for Violence Prevention and Exposure and intervention strategies for implementation.

Background.  Violence causes physical and psychosocial harm to children. Because little collaboration exists between specialties in the USA, a model that incorporates both a public health and psychosocial approach is needed to assess the risk for exposure to violence and the effects of violence as well as developing prevention strategies. Prevention and intervention includes primary, secondary and tertiary levels that focus on either the community or individual. However, primary and secondary prevention, such as anticipatory guidance and screening, can be implemented by both community and primary care nurses.

Methods.  A review of the literature and on-line resources focusing on children's exposure to violence provided the basis for discussion of the commonalities and differences between the public health and psychosocial approach to assessing, preventing and intervening with children exposed to violence. This discussion led to the development of the proposed model.

Conclusions.  This model can identify more children at risk for social, physical and psychological harm because of exposure to violence. Implementing prevention or treatment interventions can decrease the impact of violence on children.

Relevance to clinical practice.  This model can be implemented by public health, psychiatric and primary care nurses by incorporating the model into the well-child exam, school screenings and after-school programs. Collaboration between specialties will increase referrals for participation in anti-violence programs or treatment interventions.