Violence and violent injuries are a serious threat to the health of children and youth in the United States. It is crucial that pediatricians define their role and develop the appropriate skills to address this threat effectively. From a clinical perspective, pediatricians should incorporate into their practices preventive education, screening for risk, and linkages to necessary intervention and follow-up services. As advocates, pediatricians should become involved at the local and national levels to address key risk factors and assure adequacy of preventive and treatment programs. There are also educational and research needs central to the development of effective clinical strategies. This policy statement defines the emerging role of pediatricians in youth violence prevention and management. It reflects the importance of this issue in the strategic agenda of the American Academy of Pediatrics for promoting optimal child health and development.

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