(a) Notwithstanding any other state law concerning confidentiality to the contrary, the following persons who, in their professional or official capacity, have reason to believe that child abuse or neglect has occurred or that there exists a substantial risk that child abuse or neglect may occur in the reasonably foreseeable future, shall immediately report the matter orally to the department or to the police department:
(1) Any licensed or registered professional of the healing arts or any health-related occupation who examines, attends, treats, or provides other professional or specialized services, including but not limited to physicians, including physicians in training, psychologists, dentists, nurses, osteopathic physicians and surgeons, optometrists, chiropractors, podiatrists, pharmacists, and other health-related professionals;
(2) Employees or officers of any public or private school;
(3) Employees or officers of any public or private agency or institution, or other individuals, providing social, medical, hospital, or mental health services, including financial assistance;
(4) Employees or officers of any law enforcement agency, including but not limited to the courts, police departments, department of public safety, correctional institutions, and parole or probation offices;
(5) Individual providers of child care, or employees or officers of any licensed or registered child care facility, foster home, or similar institution;
(6) Medical examiners or coroners; and
(7) Employees of any public or private agency providing recreational or sports activities.
(b) Whenever a person designated in subsection (a) is a member of the staff of any public or private school, agency, or institution, that staff member shall immediately report the known or suspected child abuse or neglect directly to the department or to the police department and also shall immediately notify the person in charge or a designated delegate of the report made in accordance with this chapter.
(c) The initial oral report shall be followed as soon as possible by a report in writing to the department. If a police department or the department of public safety is the initiating agency, a written report shall be filed with the department for cases that the police or the department of public safety takes further action on or for active cases in the department under this chapter. All written reports shall contain the name and address of the child and the child’s parents or other persons responsible for the child’s care, if known, the child’s age, the nature and extent of the child’s injuries, and any other information that the reporter believes might be helpful or relevant to the investigation of the child abuse or neglect. This subsection shall not be construed to serve as a cause of action against the department, the police, or the department of public safety.
(d) Any person subject to subsection (a) shall, upon demand of the department or any police department, provide all information related to the alleged incident of child abuse or neglect, including, but not limited to, medical records and medical reports, which was not included in the written report submitted pursuant to subsection (c).
(e) The director may adopt, amend, or repeal rules, subject to chapter 91, to further define or clarify the specific forms of child abuse or neglect enumerated in section 350-1 for use in implementing this chapter; provided that rules adopted under this subsection shall be limited to such further or clarifying definitions.
Any person subject to section 350-1.1(a) who knowingly prevents another person from reporting, or who knowingly fails to provide information as required by section 350-1.1(c) or (d), shall be guilty of a petty misdemeanor.
Year of enactment1987
Last Amended2006, 1987