The Physician's Guide to Intimate Partner Violence and Abuse

The Physician's Guide to Intimate Partner Violence and Abuse

by Patricia R Salber, MD and Ellen Taliaferro, MD

Review by Ruth Shaber, MD

Spring 2007 - Volume 11 Number 2

The facts are overwhelming. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) predicts that 5.3 million incidents of intimate partner violence (IPV) occur each year among US adult women and 3.2 million occur among men. Recent data from Group Health Cooperative demonstrates that about 46% of the female members have experienced physical, sexual, or emotional IPV in their lifetime, and data from the Kaiser Permanente Northern California Prevention Program estimates that in the previous year, at least 4% of women patients have experienced physical injury from an intimate partner--that is about 46,000 members in Northern California alone. The social and financial impact is enormous. The CDC estimates that the direct health care costs of IPV are over $4 billion a year. And, evidence has shown that IPV, along with its many comorbidities, is the number one cause of premature death, injury, and illness in women ages 15-­44 years.1

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