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[ Recorded presentation ] Recorded presentation

Stages of behavioral change in domestic violence victims in an urban ED

Maureen Gavin Leffler, MPH1, Elizabeth M. Datner, MD2, and Frances S Shofer, PhD2. (1) Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine, 8427 Germantown Avenue, Rear Apartment, Philadelphia, PA 19118, (215) 247-7275, mogavin@hotmail.com, (2) Department of Emergency Medicine, University of Pennsylvania, 3400 Spruce St., Philadelphia, PA 19104

Objective: This study assessed the stage of behavioral change for victims of domestic violence (DV) based on DV-related Emergency Department (ED) visits.

Methods: A convenience sample of women in an urban ED was screened for DV using a standardized screening tool. Women with current or recent DV (within 6 months) were assessed for stage of behavioral change. Comparisons were made between women presenting with DV related injury or illness (DV visit) and those with ED visits unrelated to DV (Non-DV visit). Statistical analysis included t-test analysis.

Results: 965 (22.0%) of women screened admitted DV. 156 (16.2%) victims reported recent violence. 57/156 (36.5%) had DV related visits. 127 women were stratified for stage of behavioral change: 5 (3.9%) Non-contemplative; 17 (13.4%) Contemplative; 13 (10.2%) Preparation; 49 (38.6%) Action; and 43 (33.9%) Maintenance. 38 women were successfully reached for follow-up to date. At follow-up: 4 (10.5%) Non-Contemplative; 1 (2.6%) Contemplative; 10 (26.3%) Action; and 23 (60.5%) Maintenance. Women with DV visits were not further along stage of change at initial assessment (mean 3.78 v. 3.89; p=0.590), nor did they progress further at follow-up (mean change 0.38 v. 0.17; t = 0.431, p=0.670).

Conclusions: Understanding stages of behavioral change of DV victims may help direct ED interventions. This study finds no difference in stage of change for women presenting to an ED with an injury or illness related to DV. Further study should explore impact of stage of change on acceptance of interventions.

Learning Objectives:

Keywords: Domestic Violence, Behavior Modification

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.

[ Recorded presentation ] Recorded presentation

Violence Against Women

The 132nd Annual Meeting (November 6-10, 2004) of APHA