South African Medical Journal

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Domestic abuse - an antenatal survey at King Edward VIII Hospital, Durban

M Mbokota, J Moodley


Objectives. To determine exposure to domestic violence by a partner or spouse among pregnant women attending a public sector hospital in Durban, South Africa.
Design. Six hundred and four randomly chosen women from a low-income community were interviewed over a 6-month period using a standardised questionnaire.
Results. Thirty-eight per cent had experienced domestic violence at some point in their lives. Physical abuse (52%) was the most common, and 35% had been abused during the current pregnancy.
Conclusion. Domestic violence is common in pregnancy among women attending a public sector hospital.

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