The incidence and prevalence of child maltreatment are continuing concerns. A number of sources have been tapped to yield incidence and prevalence figures. Official reports, which are mandated under state laws, provide an important national source of incidence and prevalence data. Large, rigorous incidence studies funded by the federal government track cases and estimate the percentage that result in formal reports. This chapter presents findings from each of these very different indicators and attempts to integrate their findings. Because officially reported cases have the clearest implications for the child protective system, the authors focus particularly on several important issues related to outcomes for officially reported cases.
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