In this photo made Wednesday, May 24, 2017, colored pins on a map marks churches in areas of Fort Worth where research is predicting that there's a high risk of child abuse and neglect occurring. Aid organizations are using the research to try to focus outreach efforts into these areas. (AP Photo/LM Otero)

Texas doctor seeks to stop child abuse before it can happen

August 13, 2017 - 9:27 am

FORT WORTH, Texas (AP) — A Texas doctor is hoping to stop child abuse and neglect before it can happen by adapting a predictive modeling system that's been successful in reducing violent crime.

Pediatric anesthesiologist Dyann Daley started a nonprofit this summer to help communities create maps that can zero in on areas as small as a few blocks where such maltreatment is likeliest to happen.

The hope is that it will help head off instances of abuse and that it can help advocacy groups better focus their limited resources on where they'll be most effective.

Unlike the common hot spot mapping approach, which identifies high-frequency areas of child abuse based on past cases, Daley's risk terrain modeling approach identifies other risk factors that indicate an area is fertile ground for abuse.

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