Medical Exams

Our Medical Examinations

Our medical evaluations are child oriented. We aim to make our patient feel as comfortable as possible. While the examination is very important for a thorough evaluation and potential collection of physical evidence, we recognize that child victims of physical abuse, sexual abuse and neglect often have concerns about their bodies that they are too embarrassed to voice. This examination is a wonderful opportunity to address those concerns in a caring and gentle manner.

FAQs

The Medical Team is located within the Tree House Child Advocacy Center. We are a child friendly environment equipped to medically evaluate, examine and provide treatment recommendations for child victims of physical abuse, sexual abuse and neglect. We serve children from ages 0 -17.  

Our medical staff consists of a Board-Certified Child Abuse Pediatrician and Specially Trained Registered Nurse. They have expertise and experience in examining and treating this vulnerable population while as well, supporting their non offending parents. 

The medical visit consists of both obtaining a history from the child and a physical examination. 

One goal of the medical visit is for patients to share their own history of not only abuse and neglect, but also of other health related and emotional needs. This view allows for a more comprehensive approach to understanding and addressing needs of our patients. Practicing in this manner, we can provide age appropriate anticipatory guidance not only for the trauma they experienced, but also taking into account other health and developmental needs. 

During the office visit our Pediatrician and Nurse explain the exam to both child and parent. Opportunities are afforded to the child to ask any questions, voice concerns or express fears related to exam. This helps to empower our patients with information to help alleviate anxieties about the unknown prior to examination. No child will be forced to comply with a medical exam. 

After the child speaks confidentially with our doctor, she is escorted to a child friendly examining suite. Here the nurse has prepared a personal gown. We respect the wishes of the child regarding any parental participation in the exam.  Vital Signs are obtained, height, weight, etc. A complete head to toe exam is performed. The exam includes obtaining appropriate lab tests for STI’s and photos or videos as necessary. 

At the end of the exam the nurse and the doctor will spend time with the child and parent, separately or together explaining the results of the exam. Further recommendations are also discussed at that time. 

With parent consent, a copy of the medical report of their child’s visit is sent to their Pediatrician.  This assures that the child’s medical provider is aware of this recent trauma and be sensitive for their follow up care. If needed, we will follow STI testing for our children and alert the child’s Pediatrician for other medical needs. All in house medical services are free of charge. 

If a child would benefit from supportive trauma therapy, recommendations for this will also be made at the conclusion of the medical visit. 

This process is many times overwhelming for both parent and child, Therefore, the child and their non offending parent are always welcome to call our Child Abuse Pediatrician or our Nurse after they are discharged with any questions pertaining to the child’s health and welfare.