The 131st Annual Meeting (November 15-19, 2003) of APHA

The 131st Annual Meeting (November 15-19, 2003) of APHA

3292.0: Monday, November 17, 2003 - 2:30 PM

Abstract #61641

Characteristics of women referred for on-site domestic violence services in a managed care organization

Brigid McCaw, MD, MS, MPH, Family Violence Prevention Program, Kaiser Permanente Northern California Region, 1950 Franklin St, 18th Floor, Oakland, CA 94612, (510) 987-2035, brigid.mccaw@kp.org

Objective: To gather information about domestic violence victims identified in a health care setting. Methods: A comprehensive program was established in a large, staff model managed-care organization to increase identification and referral of domestically abused female patients. Information was drawn from consultation forms completed by clinicians; interviews conducted by social workers; surveys administered to a convenience sample; and from medical chart review. Case profiles based on 3 women who attended an on-site support group were developed. Sample studied: Women who were seen for routine care, identified as victims of domestic abuse, and referred to a specially trained social worker for further assessment. The study sample was ethnically diverse and included women who had been assaulted, women who had depression, and women with various somatic symptoms. Results: Of the 265 women who agreed to a domestic violence referral, 177 (67%) were contacted for further evaluation. Referrals originated in multiple departments, with 11% self-referred. Survey responses showed that the most frequently cited reasons for accepting referral were unhappiness with current situation, wanting to leave or change the situation, concern about children who witnessed abuse, and the suggestion by a health care practitioner that the patientís symptoms (such as depression) could be related to the abuse. The case profiles illustrated common themes observed among women who participated in the support group. Conclusions: This report provides greater understanding of victims of domestic abuse, their presentation in the medical setting, their motivation for accepting referral, and issues which affect their recovery.

Learning Objectives:

Keywords: Domestic Violence, Health Care

Presenting author's disclosure statement:
I do not have any significant financial interest/arrangement or affiliation with any organization/institution whose products or services are being discussed in this session.

Violence Prevention in Families and Communities: identification and treatment of victims of violence

The 131st Annual Meeting (November 15-19, 2003) of APHA