Screening for Intimate Partner Violence: The Impact of Screener and Screening Environment on Victim Comfort

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The barriers that professionals face when screening victims for intimate partner violence (IPV) are well studied. The specific barriers that victims face however when being screened are not. The authors sought to identify characteristics of the screener and screening environment that make a victim feel more or less comfortable when disclosing a history of IPV. One hundred forty self-reported female victims of IPV completed a survey regarding their experiences with screening and degree of comfort with certain traits of the screener and the screening environment. Women demonstrated a preference to be screened by a woman, someone of the same race, a provider aged 30 to 50 years, and without anyone else present. Screeners should be aware of characteristics that impact victim comfort and should provide multiple opportunities for women to disclose IPV in a safe, respectful, and culturally effective environment.



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