About This Program

The Massachusetts General Hospital Child Protection Program is a resource for hospital staff and affiliates, families and the community in navigating issues of child abuse and neglect.

The Massachusetts General Hospital Child Protection Program is a multidisciplinary team providing leadership in response to child maltreatment. The program is a resource for hospital staff and affiliates, families and the community in navigating issues of child abuse and neglect. We are committed to providing all clinicians who care for children with the basic skills and knowledge necessary to provide the full range of appropriate support and service to children and their families (i.e. screen, identify, assess, intervene, refer, and follow-up) in suspected cases of child abuse and neglect.Photo of six teens with their backs to the camera and their arms around each other

The mission of the Child Protection Program (CPP) at Massachusetts General Hospital is to:

  • Provide the highest standard of clinical care to victims of child abuse and neglect
  • Provide consistency in management of cases of child maltreatment
  • Provide expert consultation and training for the hospitals' multidisciplinary staff and trainees
  • Foster the development of collaborative programs with other hospitals and community agencies
  • Ensure hospital compliance with mandatory child abuse reporting laws and standards of practice

Services

Clinical Consultation

  • The Child Protection Consult Team (CPT) provides consultation and support to staff, trainees, families and community affiliates who have concerns about possible child abuse or neglect.
  • The CPT can conduct medical evaluations in cases of suspected physical abuse, sexual abuse and neglect of children in our hospital.

Education and Training

We provide education and training initiatives to multidisciplinary hospital staff, trainees and community partners about issues related to child maltreatment and protection.

Community Collaboration

Photo of six school-age children playing in a fountainWe develop and maintain relationships with community partners including; other Boston pediatric hospitals, statewide hospital Child Protection Programs, the Department of Children and Families, Law Enforcement, statewide Children’s Advocacy Centers, Office of the Child Advocate, etc.

Policy and Program Development

Our team contributes to the development, review and implementation of hospital policy and procedure related to issues of child maltreatment and protection.

Research

Our program’s research component focuses on data collection and publication related to issues of child maltreatment and protection.

Case Consultation

Providers can request a Child Protection consult at any time. A consultation can assist in managing a case where there are concerns for abuse.

MGH Child Abuse and Neglect Policy states: Staff should consult the CPT when concerns about child abuse/neglect arise

A consultation offers:

  • Supportive discussion of the case and expert recommendations
  • Education about child maltreatment
  • Assistance in determining appropriate response/ intervention
  • Advice regarding threshold for mandated reporting
  • Assistance with reporting process
  • Advocacy with DCF and other community partners
  • Consultation may include the CPP social worker and/or the CPP MD. A medical consultation will specifically be considered when there is a question about the diagnosis or medical management of any type of suspected abuse.Photo of six school-aged children in a field holding hands and walking away from the camera

Resources

Reporting Child Abuse and/ or Neglect

Department of Children and Families
The Department investigates allegations of abuse and neglect reported by professionals and the public. When a case is opened, DCF connects families with services in the community and works with them to make sure children can grow and thrive in a safe, stable home.

Mass.gov - Report Child Abuse or Neglect
Learn what to do if you suspect a child is being abused or neglected.

Sexual Abuse/ Sexual Assault

The Massachusetts Children's Alliance
Coalition of the 12 Children's Advocacy Centers throughout Massachusetts. Children’s Advocacy Centers (CACs) are child-friendly centers where professionals coordinate a response to allegations of child sexual and severe physical abuse. Find the CAC nearest to you.

Boston Area Rape Crisis Center (BARCC)
Comprehensive rape crisis center in the Greater Boston area providing free, confidential support and services to survivors of sexual violence ages 12 and up and their families and friends.

Support to End Exploitation Now (SEEN)
SEEN provides a coordinated, multi-disciplinary response to at-risk and sexually exploited youth.

Bullying

Bullying: A Guide for Parents  
A brochure for parents from the Massachusetts Attorney General explaining bullying, the law, cyber bullying, responding to bullying and assisting your child if they are being bullied, witnessing bullying or if they are bullying.  

Stopbullying.gov
Provides information for parents, school staff, other adults in the community, and children about preventing bullying, responding to bullying, and the law related to bullying.

General Resources

Institute for Health and Recovery (IHR)
Resource archive by zip code across Massachusetts for organizations that assist with Addiction Services, Basic Needs, Behavioral Health, Housing, Medical Care, Parenting, Prenatal and postpartum Care, Professional Advancement, and Urgent Assistance. Specific categories can be selected within a particular zip code.

Office of the Child Advocate (OCA)
The OCA works with families, legislators, social workers, and other professionals to ensure Massachusetts state agencies provide children with quality services and that children receiving services are protected from harm.

Contact us

For consultation and clinical questions (pager): 617-726-2000 #32728
Office: 617-724-0285

For general questions about the program: ABlanchard4@mgh.harvard.edu

For questions related to training and education, or to request a training: ABlanchard4@mgh.harvard.edu

For questions about the residency training program: ANewton1@mgh.harvard.edu

For questions related to research: CBPierre@partners.org

Send copies of all 51A’s to: ABlanchard4@mgh.harvard.edu

Meet the Team

Medical Director: Alice Newton, MA, FAAP
Program Manager: Aine Blanchard, LICSW
Program Physician: Fiona Danaher, MD, MPH
Director of Research: Claudette Pierre, PHD
Clinical Social Worker: Justine Romano, LICSW