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Estimating the Prevalence Rate of Child Physical and Psychological Maltreatment in South Korea

Jaejin Ahn 1 & Bong Joo Lee 2 & Sang Kyoung Kahng 2 & Hye Lan Kim2 &

Ock Kyeung Hwang 3 & Eun Ju Lee 4 & Hea Reong Shin 5 & Min Sang Yoo 2 &

Soo Youn Lee 2 & Youngcho Cho 2 & Young Sun Yoo 2 & You Jung Kwak 6 &

Young Mi Shin 7 & Ji Young Lim 8 & Yun Jung Cho 9 & Soo Young Park4 & Joan P. Yoo2

1. Department of Social Welfare, Gachon University

2. Department of Social Welfare, Seoul National University

3. Department of Child Care and Education, Seoul Theological University

4. Department of Social Welfare, Dongguk University

5. Child Welfare Society of Korea

6. Child Support Center for Independence Living, Korea Human Resource Development Institute forHealth & Welfare

7. College of Human Ecology Child Development Family Studies, Seoul National University

8. Korea Childcare Promotion Institute

9. Department of Social Welfare, Chungbuk National University


In Korea, an amendment to the Child Welfare Act was made in 2008 that required a national study estimating the occurrence rate of child abuse and neglect every 5 years. The present study reports the major findings of the first national studyconducted after the 2008 amendment. The aim of the study is to estimate the prevalence of child physical and psychological maltreatment (CPPM) in Korea and to explore the basic characteristics associated with such incidents. Household surveys were adminis- tered to caregivers and focal children who were school age and older. We estimated the prevalence of CPPM using the Parent–child Conflict Tactic Scale, which was deve- loped by Straus et al. (1998). The occurrence rate of CPPM was 25.3 % in Korea, with instances differing by household income, poverty status, and size of the region. Children who experienced physical and psychological maltreatment were more likely to witness the abuse of their siblings and domestic violence. The implications of the findings are discussed and recommendations made for further research.


Prevalencerate.Childphysicalandpsychologicalmaltreatment.South Korea . Survey methodology

Child Ind Res (2017) 10:187–203 DOI 10.1007/s12187-016-9369-z

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