Child Protection

The Division of Child Protection, also known as the Center for Families, within our Department of Pediatrics, is focused on the problem of child abuse and neglect. We have activities in four areas: clinical, research, teaching, and advocacy.

You can contact the Division of Child Protection by calling 410-706-6144.

Howard Dubowitz, MD, MS
Professor of Pediatrics 
Head, Division of Child Protection

Make an Appointment | Physicians and Staff

Clinical | Research | Teaching | Advocacy


Our clinical work spans the range from prevention to forensic diagnosis to treatment.

  • The Safe Environment for Every Kid (SEEK) project involves testing a model of enhanced pediatric primary care focused on identifying and addressing major psychosocial problems (depression, substance abuse, intimate partner violence) families may be facing. 

  • Our UMMS Child Protection Team (CPT) provides 24/7 interdisciplinary consultation to staff when concerns of possible abuse or neglect arise. In addition, the CPT offers training and helps develop policies concerning child abuse and neglect.

  • Our Care Clinic, funded by the Maryland Department of Human Resources and the United Way, provides treatment to abused and neglected children and their families free of charge. 

  • The Maryland Child Abuse Medical Providers (CHAMP) program, funded by the Maryland Department of Health and Mental Hygiene, is developing a statewide network of physicians and nurses, expert in the area of child maltreatment. 

  • Our Child Advocacy Centers coordinate the evaluation of children suspected of having been sexually abused.

  • The Pediatric Emergency Department (PED) specializes in the evaluation and management of children and young adolescents who are suspected of having been sexually abused or assaulted.


Our Research Division has a rich research program focused on several major issues:

  • The Prevention of Child Maltreatment (The SEEK project). Funded by the US DHHS, Administration for Children and Families, the CDC and the Doris Duke Foundation. 

  • Understanding the Antecedents and Outcomes of Child Maltreatment. This project, LONGitudinal Studies on Child Abuse and Neglect (LONGSCAN), is funded by the US DHHS, Administration for Children and Families.

  • Epidemiology of Abusive Abdominal Trauma in Young Children. Identifies the frequency, risk factors, and outcomes for children hospitalized with abusive abdominal trauma. (Supported by the National Institute on Child Health and Development of the NIH).

  • Epidemiology of Occult (Masked) Abdominal Trauma in Physically Abused Children. This research project will examine the frequency of and risk factors for occult abdominal trauma in children who come to the hospital with other child abuse-related injuries. (Supported by the National Institute on Child Health and Development of the NIH.


Our interdisciplinary faculty and staff are actively engaged in teaching on a wide variety of topics related to child maltreatment within the University of Maryland, the state of Maryland, and both nationally and internationally.


Our faculty and staff are active in advocating for improved laws, policies and programs concerning child maltreatment at the local, state, and national levels.

Contact Us 

520 W Lombard St, 1st Floor 
Baltimore, MD 21201