Despite the growing interest in child abuse and its prevention, to date no systematic research has been conducted to determine the usefulness of instruments used to identify and predict abuse or neglect. The present study is a review and analysis of predictive instruments of abuse or neglect with the goal of identifying the predictive efficiency of the instruments. Analysis reveals a variety of problems with predictive efficiency, particularly as predicting individual risk of abuse or neglect relates to primary prevention. Implications of the findings and suggestions for practice are discussed.

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