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  • File copyright Colin Purrington. You may use for making your poster, of course, but please do not plagiarize, adapt, or put on your own site. Also, do not upload this file, even if modified, to third-party file-sharing sites such as doctoc.com. If you have insatiable need to post a template onto your own site, search the internet for a different template to steal. File downloaded from http://colinpurrington.com/tips/academic/posterdesign.

    Domestic violence (DV) is one of the most pervasive forms of violence in South Africa, with multiple, complex physical and psychological consequences. This places an overwhelming health burden on women, their families and the health care system. Local and international literature suggests that DV is one of the most common reasons for women to present at health care facilities (HCFs), making the healthcare system an important entry point (Watts & Mayhew, 2004). Women experiencing DV often do not seek help, for a a variety of complex reasons including stigma, and financial dependence on the abuser. However, because DV has severe health consequences it is likely that at some point, women experiencing DV will consult a healthcare provider, placing health care practitioners (HCPs) in a unique position to identify abuse and intervene. However, existing screening practices are often discretionary, and inconsistent.

    As widespread as it is, DV is not a recognised public health concern and thus suffers from poor, almost non-existent, resource allocation and health policy development. The Domestic Violence Act 116 of 1998 (DVA), the only legislative attempt to recognise DV victims rights to seek immediate medical assistance, does not impose any positive legal duties on HCPs to inquire about, screen, make referrals or holistically treat health-related consequences of DV.

    Despite this, the existing legal and policy framework is pitted with opportunities for DV screening, and empirical evidence suggests that further policy measures would go a long way toward facilitating DV screening and treatment in health contexts. Various pieces of South African legislation either provide the opportunities for health care practitioners to screen patients for domestic violence, or in themselves imply domestic violence screening. These include:Mental health Act, (Act No. 17 of 2002)National Health Act (Act No. 61 of 2003)International Health Regulations Act (Act No. 28 of 1974)Traditional Health Practitioners Act (Act No. 22 of 2007)Choice on Termination of Pregnancy Act (Act No. 92 of 1996)

    This exploratory study gives a descriptive overview of DV screening practices in healthcare settings in Cape Town, South Africa. It evidences the need for comprehensive screening protocols and training.

    The study used a mixed-methods design: quantitative primary method and a qualitative secondary method. The PREMIS instrument (Short, Alpert, Harris & Surprenant, 2006) is adapted for the South African context. It displays satisfactory psychometric properties. The questionnaire was via SurveyMonkey and a paper-based version. The complementary qualitative measure consists of in-depth semi-structured follow-up interviews with questionnaire respondents.

    The study yielded a convenience sample of 49 HCPs. The sample consists of 55.1% doctors (27/49) and 44.9% nurses (22/49). Of these, 77.6% are female (38/49); 18,4% are male (9/49); and 4,1% identify as other (2/49). The sample is made up of 46.9% white respondents (23/49); 24.5% coloured respondents (12/49); 22.4% black/African respondents (11/49); and 4.1% Indian/Asian respondents (2/49). Ages range from 28 to 60+ with an average age of 42 years. Experience in years range from two to 44 years with an average experience of 17 years. Of the respondents, 71.4% works in the public sector (35/49); 32.7% work in the private sector (16/49); and 8.2% work in the NGO-based sector (4/49). Some respondents work in multiple sectors. In-depth semi-structured follow-up interviews have been conducted with four questionnaire respondents.

    53.1% (26/49) of HCPs screen for DV only when there are abuse indicators on a patients history or exam - 34.7% do not.However, 71.4% (35/49) agrees that initiating a discussion about DV with a patient is her/his responsibility.36.7% (18/49) have not had any prior training about DV. A fear of testifying prevents others from screening: 32.7% (16/49)63.3% (31/49) believes patients are generally unwilling to discuss DV.22.4% (11/49) believes that screening is offending to patients. Others believe that screening is like opening Pandoras boxTime constraints and a high workload are mentioned by 44.9% (22/49) as important barriers to DV screening. 61.2% (30/49) feels their facility does not allow them adequate time to respond to DV survivors. According to 51% (25/49) there is also a lack of private space to discuss DV with a patient.Only 8.2% (4/49) feel they have adequate knowledge of referral resources in the community. The availability of a short and easy-to-use DV screening tool would encourage HCPs to screen and integrate DV screening in routine questioning, like asking a patient about her/his HIV status.A focus on DV within healthcare facilities, e.g., by having patient materials, screening requirements by management, or DV champions, would encourage HCPs to screen for DV. Furthermore, the availability of protocols/ policies/ guidelines/ SOPs guiding the identification, management and the referral of DV survivors step-by-step would facilitate screening in healthcare facilities.

    HCP Knowledge HCP Skills

    Symptom-based (Selective) Screening Availability and Use of Policy

    Rosanne Anholt (Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam) &Lillian Artz, Talia Meer, Gray Aschman (Gender Health & Justice Research Unit, UCT) Literature citedDevries, K. M., Mak, J. Y. T., Garca-Moreno, C., Petzold, M., Child, J. C., Falder, G., Lim, S., Bacchus, L. J., Engell, R. E., Rosenfeld, L., Pallitto, C., Vos, T., Abrahams, N. & Watts, C. H. (2013). The global prevalence of intimate partner violence against women. Science, 340, 1527-1528.Short, L. M., Alpert, E., Harris, J. M. & Surprenant, Z. J. (2006). A tool for measuring physician readiness to manage intimate partner violence. American Journal of Preventive Medicine, 30, 173-215.Watts, C. & Mayhew, S. (2004). Reproductive health services and intimate partner violence: Shaping a pragmatic response in Sub-Saharan Africa. International Family Planning Perspectives, 30, 207-213.










    (Very) Little

    A Moderate or Fair Amount

    Quite a Bit or Very Much

    How much do you feel you know about...


    Nothing(Very) LittleA Moderate or Fair AmountQuite a Bit or Very Much

    Signs or Symptoms6.124.546.922.4

    Referral Resources12.242.928.616.3

    Relationship IPV and Pregnancy8.532.732.722.4

    Childhood Effects12.240.826.520.4

    Questions to Identify IPV8.232.738.820.4

    Reasons for Concealing IPV6.124.540.828.6

    What to say and not to say14.330.632.722.4






    (Strongly) disagree


    (Strongly) agree

    I have the necessary skills to discuss IPV with a survivor who is a...


    (Strongly) disagreeNeutral(Strongly) agree

    Female patient24.528.646.9

    Male patient46.930.618.4

    Different culture/ ethnicity32.732.730.6

    LGBTI patient40.830.624.5

    Als u de afmetingen van het gegevensbereik van de grafiek wilt wijzigen, versleept u de rechterbenedenhoek van het bereik.










    Seldom or Sometimes

    (Nearly) Always

    I ask about IPV when I see...


    NeverSeldom or Sometimes(Nearly) Always


    Chronic Pelvic Pain16.328.636.7

    Irritable Bowel Syndrome24.540.812.2


    Depression or Anxiety14.336.728.6


    Eating Disorders18.428.622.4








    The availability of a policy or protocol for the screening and management of IPV

    The availability of a policy or protocol for the screening and management of IPV


    The availability of a policy or protocol for the screening and management of IPV



    Yes, and used to some extent16.3

    Yes, but not used8.2

    Yes, and widely used4.1

    Did not answer4.1