Division Highlights - Child Abuse & Bioethics

The Division of Child Abuse and Bioethics works through the University of Wisconsin American Family Children’s Hospital Child Protection Program to provide clinical services for suspected cases of child maltreatment and neglect.

Education and research efforts aim to improve the recognition, diagnosis, and treatment of child abuse victims, including physical abuse, child torture, sexual abuse, child neglect and medical child abuse.

Our faculty also provide consultation on ethical issues in clinical care and research, help frame national and international debates on a variety of bioethical issues, and provide education in ethical issues in health care and human subjects research.

2017 Highlights

  • Barbara Knox, MD, is a site co-investigator on a new $709,000 grant from the Patient-Centered Outcomes Research Institute (PCORI) that aims to demonstrate the feasibility and efficacy of an electronic health-record–based child abuse clinical decision support system. The grant, led by Rachel Berger, MD, child advocacy center chief at the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center, was awarded in 2017; data collection will begin in 2018.

    In addition, in 2017, Dr. Knox gave a total of 48 educational presentations (18 at the UW School of Medicine and Public Health and UW Health, five statewide, and 25 nationwide) on child abuse to clinicians, staff, learners, law enforcement and social services professionals.
  • The division continued efforts in support of UW Health’s ‘Hitting Hurts' initiative, which has resulted in "No Hit Zones" in its facilities and public education about the risks of using corporal punishment on children.


  • Barbara L. Knox, MD

    Professor (CHS)

  • Amanda L. Palm, PA-C, LCSW

    Amanda L. Palm, PA-C, LCSW

    Physician Assistant

  • Jessica A. Wipperfurth, SW

    Jessica A. Wipperfurth, SW

    Clinical Social Worker

Recent Publications

Grant Support