In order to protect children whose health and well-being may be adversely affected through the infliction, by other than accidental means, of harm through physical injury or neglect, mental injury, sexual abuse, sexual exploitation, or maltreatment, the legislature requires the reporting of these cases by practitioners of the healing arts and others to the department. It is not the intent of the legislature that persons required to report suspected child abuse or neglect under this chapter investigate the suspected child abuse or neglect before they make the required report to the department. Reports must be made when there is a reasonable cause to suspect child abuse or neglect in order to make state investigative and social services available in a wider range of cases at an earlier point in time, to make sure that investigations regarding child abuse and neglect are conducted by trained investigators, and to avoid subjecting a child to multiple interviews about the abuse or neglect. It is the intent of the legislature that, as a result of these reports, protective services will be made available in an effort to
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