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Infants reported for maltreatment had an increased risk of death from medical causes
  1. Allison Low1,
  2. Fiona Jane Blyth2
  1. 1Department of Paediatrics, Barnsley Hospital NHS Foundation Trust, Barnsley, UK
  2. 2Community Paediatrics, Barnsley Hospital NHS Foundation Trust, Barnsley, UK
  1. Correspondence to Dr Allison Low, Department of Paediatrics, Barnsley Hospital NHS Foundation Trust, Barnsley, South Yorkshire, UK; allison.low{at}nhs.net

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Study design

Design: Population-based prospective data-linkage study.

Participants: All infants born in California, USA, between 2010 and 2016 (3 455 985 infants), identified through birth records.

Exposure: Child Protection Service (CPS) records were accessed to identify reports of child maltreatment and the number of maltreatment reports per child. All allegations of maltreatment were included, regardless of the outcome of any ensuing child protection investigations. CPS records were also used to identify children who subsequently spent time in foster care.

Outcome: Infant death from any medical cause outside the neonatal period (between 28 and 365 days of age), identified through California state death records (1051 deaths). Deaths from injuries, including injuries related to child maltreatment, were not included.

Main results

Compared with infants without maltreatment reports, infants reported once for maltreatment had an increased risk of death …

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Footnotes

  • Contributors Both authors contributed to the development and writing of the manuscript.

  • Funding The authors have not declared a specific grant for this research from any funding agency in the public, commercial or not-for-profit sectors.

  • Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; internally peer reviewed.