Graduation Year


Document Type




Degree Granting Department

Public Health

Major Professor

Bruce Levin, Dr.P.H.

Co-Major Professor

Martha Coulter, Dr.P.H.

Committee Member

Svetlana Yampolskaya, Ph.D.

Committee Member

Carla Vandeweerd, Ph.D.


Child Maltreatment, Child Welfare, Threatened Harm


There were no studies found in the literature that primarily focused on threatened harm as type of maltreatment. This study utilized Florida's child welfare administrative data to explore threatened harm as a type of maltreatment, particularly as a predictor of recurrence of maltreatment within six and 12 months for children who had a verified report of maltreatment in FY2005-2006. Threatened harm was examined in three ways; when it was reported as the only maltreatment, the initial maltreatment, and in situations where there was a prior report. The most prevalent acts of threatened harm were examined separately. It was examined as a predictor of recurrence of any maltreatment and also as a predictor of recurrence of a different type of maltreatment. The results of bivariate and multivariate Cox regression analysis indicated that children who experienced threatened harm were at increased odds for recurrence of maltreatment overall. The odds were found to be greater within 12 months, for children who had a prior report and for children who experienced a substance related threatened harm. Children with a prior report were also found to be more likely to experience recurrence of a different type of maltreatment. Implications of these findings are discussed.