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Partner abuse counseling for women insufficient
Date:3/8/2013

een 2004 and 2007 McCall-Hosenfeld and colleagues surveyed 1,420 women of reproductive age who were participating in the Central Pennsylvania Women's Health Study. The women responded to questions regarding intimate partner violence, healthcare access, socio-economic status and whether they had received preventive healthcare services. The researchers report their results in an article published in the March/April issue of Women's Health Issues.

In the first survey the researchers established whether women had recently been exposed to IPV by asking them to respond "yes" or "no" to a series of questions. Each question was preceded by, "In the past 12 months, has a spouse, partner or boyfriend" and completed with statements including

"Threatened to hit you or throw something at you?" and "Pushed, grabbed, shoved or slapped you?"

Two years after the first survey the researchers followed up with the women, asking about any preventive health care services and preventive counseling they had received over the past 24 months. Again, the women surveyed were asked to respond "yes" or "no" to a series of questions, including

"Have you been tested for sexually transmitted infections or HIV?" and "Has a doctor or health professional asked you or talked to you about concerns about safety or violence in your home?"

According to the study the findings represent "a missed opportunity for health promotion among women exposed to IPV."

"Our data suggest that many women who have been exposed to IPV are not being appropriately identified in health care settings and are not getting many of the health care services they need," said McCall-Hosenfeld.

In January 2013 the United States Preventive Services Task Force released a guideline recommending that clinicians screen all women of reproductive age for IPV and help provide intervention services when necessary.

"We have a long way to go for healthcare to be in compliance with this guideline," said
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Contact: Victoria M. Indivero
vmi1@psu.edu
814-865-9481
Penn State
Source:Eurekalert

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