In this Section
263991 Receiving versus being denied an abortion and subsequent experiences of intimate partner violence
Tuesday, October 30, 2012 : 12:45 PM - 1:00 PM
The high prevalence of intimate partner violence (IPV) among women seeking abortions is well-established. However, little is known about the effect of abortion on IPV incidence. The Turnaway Study is a five-year prospective longitudinal study to understand the effect of abortion on women's lives. Women were recruited from 30 abortion clinics across the country where no clinic nearby performs procedures at a later gestation. This paper studies the effect of abortion on physical IPV (‘PIPV') by comparing women just above the gestational limit who were denied an abortion (Turnaways, n=231) to those just below the limit who received an abortion (Controls, n=452). There were no significant differences between the Turnaways and Controls at baseline: 11% reported experiencing PIPV; 61% had a relationship with the father of the pregnancy (‘FOP') (partner or husband); and 64% perceived the relationship as being good or very good. However, one year after seeking an abortion, Turnaways were more likely than Controls to have a relationship with the FOP (50% vs. 46%); significantly more likely to have experienced PIPV in the past 6 months (7% vs. 3% p <.05); and less likely to perceive the relationship as good or very good (59% vs. 62%). Findings suggest that being denied an abortion may increase women's exposure to PIPV, which, in turn, has well-established negative impacts on women's overall health and well-being. Clinic-based interventions may be needed to: (a) facilitate earlier detection of PIPV, and (b) provide support services enabling women to protect their safety and reproductive health.
Learning Areas:Provision of health care to the public
Public health or related organizational policy, standards, or other guidelines
Public health or related research
Social and behavioral sciences
Presenting author's disclosure statement:
Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I am an assistant researcher working on this study. For the past 10 years, I have been conducting community-based research studying the intersection of gender inequities and women's reproductive and sexual health. My recent focus has been on the feasibility and characteristics of clinic-based interventions for intimate partner violence.
I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.