Alexandria Journal of Medicine

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Knowledge and perception of domestic violence among primary care physicians and nurses: A comparative study

NI AbuTaleb, TA Dashti, SM Alasfour, M Elshazly, MI Kamel


Introduction: Domestic violence (DV) has a deteriorating influence on society by affecting victims, their children, families, and friends, as well as social and financial relationships. Primary care providers, including physicians and nurses, frequently are the first in the community to encounter the battered women.
Objective: The aim of this work was to compare the knowledge and perception of primary care physicians and nurses about DV.
Methods: This study was carried out in all primary health care centers in Kuwait. All physicians and nurses who were currently working in these centers during the study period were asked to complete a self-administered close-ended questionnaire that included personal and working conditions information. It included also knowledge about prevalence of DV, and four main aspects relevant to DV, namely deprivation, psychological, physical and sexual domains. A 5-point, Likert-scale was used to assess participant’s answers for each item.
Results: The response rate was 62.8% for physicians and 61.1% for nurses. The study revealed that the overall knowledge score was higher in physicians than nurses. Also, the scores for the individual domains were significantly higher for physicians than nurses except for psychological one.
Conclusion: Overall, primary care physicians and nurses had poor knowledge and many had negative perception regarding DV. Although physicians are somewhat more knowledgeable about DV, many more educational activities are needed.
AJOL African Journals Online