Title

Nursing Care of Immigrant and Rural Abused Women

Document Type

Book Chapter

Publication Date

2011

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Abstract

As has been noted in previous chapters, intimate partner violence (IPV) is a global health and social problem, which occurs in all countries and in all economic, social, religious, and cultural groups, and results in significant negative health and economic consequences for individuals, families, communities, and society (World Health Organization, 2002, 2005). This chapter on nursing practice with immigrant and rural women will build on previous chapters by integrating theories of IPV (chapter 3), information on long-term health consequences of IPV (chapter 2), and IPV and nursing practice (chapter 5). Specifically, in this chapter, we explore the nurse’s role in relation to immigrant and rural abused women. First, we provide an understanding of IPV as it exists within the immigrant population in the United States and summarize what is known about the unique challenges for immigrant women living with and trying to access resources while staying or leaving an abusive relationship. Drawing on this information, we will present a case study to suggest “best practices” to guide the nurse in assessment and response to immigrant women in the health care or home setting as well as guide the nurse in collaboration with the larger immigrant community to raise awareness to prevent and reduce IPV. As immigrants to the United States often live in rural communities, we will also summarize in this chapter the information that exists on IPV within rural communities and the unique challenges for abused women living in rural environments when trying to access resources while staying in, or leaving, an abusive relationship. Again, drawing on this information, we will present a case study to suggest “best practices” to guide the nurse in assessment and response to rural abused women. Lastly, we will discuss the importance of nursing leadership in collaboration between the multiple mainstream systems, including health care, legal, criminal justice, and community-based domestic violence advocacy and culturally competent community leaders and agencies to strengthen the comprehensive community response to vulnerable groups, such as immigrant and rural abused women.

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