Journal of General Internal Medicine

, Volume 11, Issue 1, pp 44–46

Identifying domestic violence in primary care practice

  • Karen M. Freund
  • Sharon M. Bak
  • Leslie Blackhall
Brief Reports

DOI: 10.1007/BF02603485

Cite this article as:
Freund, K.M., Bak, S.M. & Blackhall, L. J Gen Intern Med (1996) 11: 44. doi:10.1007/BF02603485


OBJECTIVE: To improve detection of domestic violence as a problem for women seeking primary care, we compared the addition of a single question about domestic violence on an existing self-administered health history form, to discretionary inquiry alone. We studied 689 consecutive new women patients in an internal medicine practice. Domestic violence identification rose from 0% in the control group with discretionary inquiry alone to 11.6% (95% confidence interval 8.8–14.4%) when the health history form included the following question: “At any time has a partner ever hit you, kicked you, or otherwise physically hurt you?” The addition of a single question can increase identification of domestic violence as a problem in patients’ lives.

Copyright information

© Society of General Internal Medicine 1996

Authors and Affiliations

  • Karen M. Freund
    • 1
  • Sharon M. Bak
    • 2
  • Leslie Blackhall
    • 3
  1. 1.Boston University Medical Center HospitalBoston
  2. 2.the Data Coordinating CenterBoston University School of Public HealthUSA
  3. 3.Assisted Home HospiceLos Angeles

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