Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Social Work


School of Social Work

First Reader/Committee Chair

Lim, Caroline


Background: Child maltreatment remains a widespread issue in the United States of America, (U.S.). Identifying effective methods of preventing child maltreatment is key to reducing the prevalence of this issue. Objective: This systematic review provides an overview of contemporary primary child maltreatment prevention methods in the U.S. to investigate their effectiveness. Methods: Using the OneSearch database, the following keywords were included: (“prevention methods” and “child maltreatment”), (“parental leave” and “child maltreatment”), (“primary prevention” and “child maltreatment”), (WIC and “child maltreatment”), (“home visit” and “child maltreatment”), (“child abuse and neglect” and “primary prevention”), (“affordable housing” and prevention and “child maltreatment”), (“early parent education” and “child maltreatment”), and (TANF and “child maltreatment” and prevention). The articles were narrowed down to include only those that were published between the years 2018 and 2023. Findings: Synthesis and analysis of eight articles found that research on preventative interventions have been more limited compared to secondary and tertiary preventative treatments. Among primary prevention strategies, studies have investigated a relatively diverse pool of prevention strategies against child maltreatment. However, efforts have largely focused on home visitations, which produced inconsistent findings on the effectiveness of primary child maltreatment prevention. Conclusion: The findings of this systematic review implicate the need for more primary prevention methods and programs and research on their effectiveness.