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Informing Interprofessional Practices Through Virtual Learning

Join your AFN Colleagues at this Virtual Pediatric Institue Lecture Series!

Are you interested in updating your knowledge about pediatric forensic health care principles and practices? Join your Colleagues on the 2022 Virtual Pediatric Institute Lecture Series, Walking Forward: Best Practices for Pediatric Medical Forensic Care, for current evidence-based practice information about the health care response to suspected child abuse and neglect.

The institute includes seven virtual sessions over seven weeks by medical forensic healthcare leaders from all over the United States.  Topics include problematic sexual behaviors in children, the use and importance of repeat examinations on some children, addressing childhood adversity, history-taking from child patients, discerning skin injuries in children, recognizing physical abuse and neglect and the importance of a robust peer review policy.

This "Live" Web Series will launch on August 16, 2022 and features seven interactive web sessions through September 27, 2022 (see dates and session descriptions below).  Each lecture will be 90-minutes followed by a 15 to 30-minute Q&A.  We plan to have a live webinar that is recorded so attendees can choose to view live or watch the recorded session later.  Nursing CE provided by AFN.


Upon completion of this program, learners will possess basic knowledge and skills to:

  • Understand the current landscape of pornography exposure and other online sexual behavior in children and adolescents.

  • Increase knowledge and awareness of problematic sexual behaviors (PSB) in children and youth.

  • Learn how to utilize and incorporate age-appropriate language and responses to PSB in children and youth.

  • Understand how to make appropriate safety planning and recommendations to families.

  • Be able to list three conditions that can cause changes in anogenital anatomy which could raise a suspicion of injury or abuse.

  • Recognize common normal variations in anogenital anatomy in children.

  • Define trauma and trauma-informed healthcare.

  • Discuss the pros and cons of adverse childhoood experiences (ACEs) screening.

  • Describe how TIC promotes health equity and racial justice.

  • Gain an understanding of trauma-informed care and how to build trust with patients and caregivers.

  • Learn a developmentally sensitive approach to speaking with children.

  • Understand how to assess for mental health concerns, including self-harm.

  • Learn how to gather information from a caregiver presenting with a non-verbal child.

  • Identify indicators for trafficking during history-taking.

  • Discern concerning and non-concerning soft-tissue findings in children based upon growth and development.

  • Discuss mimickers of abuse in children.

  • Collaborate effective safety planning with social service agencies for children with concerning soft tissue findings.

  • Recognize injuries concerning for abuse and head trauma in mobile infants and children.

  • Recognize findings concerning for neglect.

  • Discern next steps to take once a potentially abusive injury is recognized.

  • Understand why oversight and a robust peer review process are an essential part of pediatric sexual abuse examinations.

  • Recognize the reasons why peer review improves imaging quality and written documentation

  • Understand why a productive peer review process can improve a program's overall response to child sexual abuse.

ADV General




  • Session I: Tuesday, August 16, 2022 from 4:00 PM to 5:30 PM (EST)

  • Session II: Tuesday, August 23, 2022 from 4:00 PM to 5:30 PM (EST)

  • Session III: Tuesday, August 30, 2022 from 4:00 PM to 5:30 PM (EST)

  • Session IV: Tuesday, September 6, 2022 from 4:00 PM to 5:30 PM (EST)

  • Session V: Tuesday, September 13, 2022 from 4:00 PM to 5:30 PM (EST)

  • Session VI: Tuesday, September 20, 2022 from 4:00 PM to 5:30 PM (EST)

  • Session VII: Tuesday, September 27, 2022 from 4:00 PM to 5:30 PM (EST)



  • AFN Members Discounted Price: $225 (13.5 CE)

  • Non-AFN Members: $315 (13.5 CE)



The Academy of Forensic Nursing is accredited as a provider of nursing continuing professional development by the American Nurses Credentialing Center's Commission on Accreditation

For more information regarding contact hours, please contact for more information.


No refunds on Web Series registration.  Registrants who are unable to attend may gift his/her purchase to an individual qualifying for the same registration rate. For example, an AFN Member may not gift his/her ticket to a non-member. To make arrangements to gift your purchase to another individual, please contact AFN as soon as possible at:



ADV Agenda

Session I

August 16, 2022
90 Minutes
4:00 PM EST (3:00 PM CST, 2:00 PM MST, 1:00 PM PST)

Session 1: Problematic Sexual Behavior in Children and Adolescents

Nikki Croteau-Johnson

This presentation provides an overview of the continuum of sexual behavior in children and adolescents, including normative, concerning, and problematic behaviors.  Participants will learn how to distinguish between typical sexual behavior and problematic sexual behavior (PSB) in children and adolescents and collect tools to discern the risk factors for developing PSB.  Participants will also learn to recognize how children and adolescents are exposed to sexual content in the digital age.  Additionally, participants will have a plan to incorporate age-appropriate language and responses to PSB in children and youth, how to make appropriate safety plans, and provide recommendations to support caregivers of a youth with PSB.

Session II

August 23, 2022
90 Minutes

4:00 PM EST (3:00 PM CST, 2:00 PM MST, 1:00 PM PST)

Session 2: Is this an Injury or Something Else: The Importance of Follow-up Examinations!

Dr. Joyce Adams

There are many variations in the appearance of the genital and anal tissues in children.  It is crucial for examiners to be able to determine if an unusual finding is a result of sexual abuse or not.  For this reason, a follow-up examination of the child is essential.  If there is bruising, or if there is a clear bleeding injury, a follow-up is also required.  Examiners need to have the ability to take clear and detailed photographs of the anogenital area and have a relationship with an experienced clinician so they can be sent to the expert for review.

This workshop will include photos of genital and anal findings in children who were brought for examination due to a concern for possible sexual abuse.  Cases of clear injuries and follow up examinations of the child will be used to illustrate how the appearance can change with time.

Session III

August 30, 2022

90 Minutes

4:00 PM EST (3:00 PM CST, 2:00 PM MST, 1:00 PM PST)

Session 3:  Addressing Childhood Adversity with a Trauma-Informed Lens
Annie Lewis-O'Connor


Trauma-Informed Care (TIC) and is a frequently touted term today, yet there is much variability in how TIC is interpreted and how it is operationalized in health care settings.  Even trauma is defined in a very limited way.  In fact, trauma is intersectional and includes individual, interpersonal, and structural collective forms of trauma.  One form of trauma - Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACEs) can have a tremendous impact on the health and well-being of people across the lifespan.  While some are promoting routine ACE screening others are opposed. This webinar will define trauma, trauma-informed care and the pros and cons of ACE screening.

Session IV

September 6, 2022

90 Minutes

4:00 PM EST (3:00 PM CST, 2:00 PM MST, 1:00 PM PST)

Session 4:  Pediatric History Taking: What is Appropriate, What is Not
Dr. Lora Siller


In this session, participants will gain in depth knowledge of what is often the most valuable component of the pediatric medical exam: the history taking.  The information provided by the patient is frequently the only diagnostic information we receive.  This presentation will guide the medical provider through the interview process and provide valuable tips on how to gather this critical information in all types of patient presentations for maltreatment using a trauma informed approach.

Session V

September 13, 2022

90 Minutes

4:00 PM EST (3:00 PM CST, 2:00 PM MST, 1:00 PM PST)

Session 5:  Worrisome Skin Injuries in Young Children: Current Evidence

Dr. Rachel Clingenpeel


Bruises and other soft tissue injuries in small children are very common and can be a source of angst in medical providers and other frontline professionals interacting with potential abuse and neglect, who are trying to decide how worrisome they are and what investigations need to be pursued.  This session will review the best currently available scientific evidence with case examples, to decrease the chances of missed abuse and increase providers’ confidence in advocating for appropriate evaluations and safety plans. 

Session VI

September 20, 2022

90 Minutes

4:00 PM EST (3:00 PM CST, 2:00 PM MST, 1:00 PM PST)

Session 6:  Recognizing Child Physical Abuse and Neglect and Taking the Next Steps

Dr. Sarah A. W. Northrop


This session will help provide forensic nurses with the skills to recognize injury patterns that are concerning for child physical abuse.  Attention will be given to recognizing pattern and distribution of injuries at different ages, recognizing signs of head trauma, and recognizing neglect.  We will also discuss the next steps and interventions to take once these injuries are recognized.

Session VII

September 27, 2022

90 Minutes

4:00 PM EST (3:00 PM CST, 2:00 PM MST, 1:00 PM PST)

Session 7:  Pediatric Case Review in Action: Cases that Highlight the Importance of Collaborative Teams and Peer Review

Dr. Dena Nazer & Kirstin Neumann-Sweeney


Join Dr. Dena Nazer and Kirstin Neumann-Sweeney as they review five acute pediatric medical forensic examinations.  Each case stands to highlight the critical importance behind a consistent working partnership between their CAC and SANE Program to provide evaluation and comprehensive clinical care to children, whether an acute or non-acute presentation.

They will walk through each case from the findings during the initial acute examination process, through the exam review and referral process to the CAC for follow-up, to the examination findings during the follow-up medical evaluation.  They will also discuss the critical importance of a solid peer review process in place for pediatric sexual assault nurse examiners in assuring examination findings. 

ADV Speakers




Joyce A. Adams, MD retired as a Clinical Professor from the Department of Pediatrics at the University of California, San Diego in 2013, after 29 years on the faculty.  She has been a pioneer in developing a system of classifying anogenital findings as normal, caused by other conditions, due to injury or due to infection.  Dr. Adams developed a classification system has been widely used by clinicians in the United States and elsewhere, and her papers have been read by people across the United States and worldwide.  She has been invited by and traveled to Norway, Italy, Switzerland, Mexico, and Canada to give lectures on the topic of the medical evaluation of suspected child sexual abuse.  




Dr. Clingenpeel received her Bachelor of Science from Duke University in 1998 in psychology and biology with a certificate in neuroscience.  She then completed a two-year post-baccalaureate research program at the National Institutes of Health before attending medical school at the University of Virginia, from which she graduated in 2004.  She completed her pediatric residency training and chief residency at Tulane University in New Orleans, and fellowship in Child Abuse Pediatrics at Brown University in Providence, Rhode Island.  Dr. Clingenpeel joined the faculty at University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences in fall 2012.  She now serves as Associate Professor of Pediatrics at UAMS, as well as Associate Director for the Team for Children at Risk at Arkansas Children’s Hospital.

Dr. Clingenpeel’s practice as a child abuse pediatrician includes duties such as inpatient and outpatient evaluation of suspected child abuse and neglect, medical directorship of the Emergency Department Sexual Assault Response Team, and education of other health care providers as well as community partners regarding all aspects of child abuse and neglect.  She has been invited to teach multidisciplinary audiences around the country about medical aspects of child maltreatment.  




Nikki Croteau-Johnson is a psychologist with over 20 years of clinical experience working with children, adolescents and their families in outpatient and forensic settings.  She has specialty training in several evidence-based treatments, including, Trauma-Focused Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (TF-CBT) and Problematic Sexual Behavior (PSB-CBT-S and PSB-CBT-A).  She is the Clinical Director for the Problematic Sexual Behavior Program for Children and Adolescents at the North Carolina Child Treatment Program, where she provides direct clinical services and oversees the implementation of a statewide PSB program. She developed a clinical workforce, policies and procedures, stakeholder education and engagement, and other sustainability initiatives. 




Dr. Annie Lewis-O’Connor is an innovator, authentic and transformational leader committed to collaboration and partnerships that address health equity, racial justice, and trauma-informed approaches.  She is a dually boarded Pediatric and Women’s Health Nurse Practitioner.  She is the Founder and Director of the C.A.R.E Clinic (Coordinated Approach to Resiliency & Empowerment) at Brigham and Women’s Hospital, Boston.  

Dr. Lewis-O’Connor addresses trauma and violence from four pillars: Research, Policy, Education, and Clinical practice.  As a Robert Woods Johnson Clinical Scholar, she focused on evaluating the added benefits of trauma-informed approaches in the emergency department.  Since 2012 Annie has served as Co-Chair of the MGB’s system wide Trauma-informed Care Initiative.  Annie is one of the founding members of the Academy of Forensic Nursing.  Her program of research addresses intentional violence and how to mitigate the health consequences assuring equity for all.  She received her Master’s in Nursing from Simmons College in Boston, a Master’s in Public Health from Boston University and her PhD from Boston College. 




Dr. Nazer is an Associate Professor of Pediatrics at Wayne State University.  She is the Medical Director at the Kids-TALK Children’s Advocacy Center (CAC) in Detroit, Michigan.  Dr. Nazer is certified by the American Board of Pediatrics in both General Pediatrics and Child Abuse Pediatrics.  She teaches locally, nationally and internationally on different aspects of child maltreatment including female genital mutilation and human trafficking.




Sarah Northrop received her undergraduate degree from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and her medical degree from East Carolina University.  She completed pediatric residency at Children’s Hospital of the Kings Daughters/Eastern Virginia Medical School in Norfolk, Virginia and fellowship in Child Abuse Pediatrics at the University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio.  She is board-certified in General Pediatrics and in Child Abuse Pediatrics.  Dr. Northrop has been a full-time child abuse pediatrician at Atrium Wake Forest Baptist Health since 2017.




Dr. Lora Spiller is a child abuse pediatrician and an Assistant Professor of Pediatrics at UT Health San Antonio.  She is also the medical director of the Forensic Nurse Examiner Program at the Children’s Hospital of San Antonio.  She is responsible for the medical evaluation of children who have been suspected victims of physical abuse, neglect, and sexual abuse.

Dr. Spiller received her medical degree from Saba University School of Medicine in 2011, completed residency in general pediatrics at Geisinger Medical Center in Danville, Pennsylvania in 2014, and completed a three-year fellowship in child abuse pediatrics at UT Health San Antonio in 2018.  She is board certified by the American Board of Pediatrics in both general pediatrics and child abuse pediatrics.

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