A short-term evaluation of a hospital no hit zone policy to increase bystander intervention in cases of parent-to-child violence

Elizabeth T. Gershoff, Sarah A. Font, Catherine A. Taylor, Ann Budzak Garza, Denyse Olson-Dorff, Rebecca H. Foster

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

2 Scopus citations


This study used a pre/post design to evaluate the implementation of a hospital-wide No Hit Zone (NHZ) bystander intervention around parent-to-child hitting. A total of 2326 staff completed the pre-NHZ survey and received training about the NHZ policy; 623 staff completed the post-test survey 10 months later. A group of 225 parents participated in the pre-NHZ survey and a second group of 180 participated in the post-NHZ survey, also 10 months later. Compared to staff in the pre-NHZ group, staff in the post-NHZ group had more negative attitudes about spanking and more positive attitudes about intervention when parents hit children in the hospital. Few differences were found among the parent pre- and post-groups. This study demonstrated that NHZs are a feasible way to inform and train hospital staff in ways to intervene during incidents of parent-to-child hitting to promote a safe and healthy medical environment.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)155-162
Number of pages8
JournalChildren and Youth Services Review
StatePublished - Nov 2018


All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Education
  • Developmental and Educational Psychology
  • Sociology and Political Science

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