Safe Child Center at FMC recognized as a vital resource to child victims of abuse

April 26, 2012

Safe Child Center at Flagstaff Medical Center was once again awarded accreditation by the National Children’s Alliance (NCA) following an extensive review process. Accreditation by the alliance recognizes the comprehensive quality care Safe Child Center provides to children who are victims of or suspected victims of domestic and/or sexual abuse.

Through the accreditation, Safe Child Center (SCC) is a member of a nationwide network of accredited children’s advocacy centers; each committed to providing medical, emotional, investigative and victim advocacy services in a child-sensitive environment. SCC received its first five-year accreditation by the National Children’s Alliance in 2006. Since that date, the Center has cared for more than 1,900 children.

To achieve National Children’s Alliance accreditation, high standards of multidisciplinary care must be met. Criteria for accreditation include a child-friendly/child-appropriate facility; cultural competency and diversity; and a multidisciplinary team approach encompassing law enforcement, child protective services and prosecution; as well as mental health, medical care and victim advocacy representation. In addition, accredited children’s advocacy centers must conduct forensic interviews, medical evaluations and case reviews in accordance with NCA standardized methods to ensure consistency and accuracy.  

“As a team dedicated to responding to child abuse, we recognize the importance of maintaining accredited status from NCA,” said Susann Clinton, R.N., M.S.N, F.N.P., Safe Child Center. “Re-accreditation not only validates Flagstaff Medical Center’s and Safe Child Center’s dedication to proven effective approaches of child abuse intervention and prevention, but also contributes to consistency across the child advocacy centers.”

SCC, a child advocacy center located within FMC’s Children’s Health Center, has been helping child victims of alleged abuse throughout Northern Arizona since 1994. The program serves children from birth to age 18, as well as developmentally disabled adults. SCC is dedicated to reducing the stress that children experience as victims of crime.

SCC responds to allegations of child abuse utilizing best practices and by putting the needs of child victims first.  It is dedicated to providing comprehensive, coordinated and compassionate services to victims of child abuse. SCC supports the efforts of law enforcement, child protective services and prosecutors from various county, city, tribal and federal jurisdictions to ensure that child victims are treated with respect and dignity throughout the investigation process.

“We know that when a child victim expresses relief in being able to give a full account of a traumatic event that we are making a difference,” Clinton said.

SCC sees approximately 380 patients each year and offers a variety of services including forensic medical evaluations, forensic interviews, family advocacy and behavioral health counseling. Medical evaluations and interviews are conducted by extensively trained nurse practitioners and interviewers. Family advocates meet with family members to provide support, education, and referrals for needed services. Behavioral health professionals provide assessments and counseling for families in crisis. 

For more information about the Safe Child Center at FMC visit, follow the links to the Safe Child Center under the Our Services tab or call 928 773-2053. For information about National Children’s Alliance visit To report suspected child abuse, call local law enforcement or the Child Abuse Hotline 1 888 SOS-CHILD (1 888 767-2445).