Health care use by perpetrators of domestic violence

J Emerg Med. 2002 Apr;22(3):313-7. doi: 10.1016/s0736-4679(01)00498-x.


Research has demonstrated that men will admit to the perpetration of domestic violence (DV), if questioned, in the medical setting. The opportunity to identify DV perpetrators, however, also depends on the frequency of contact between health care providers and perpetrators. The purpose of this study was to determine health care use among a group of DV perpetrators. A survey was administered to 133 men enrolled in the largest community-based batterer treatment program in a metropolitan region. Of the 133 men surveyed, 56 (42%) indicated they had visited a doctor, hospital, or received some other type of medical care within the preceding 6 months. Of men reporting health care visits, the majority (41%, n = 23) indicated that the Emergency Department was the location where care was provided. These data demonstrate that Emergency Departments are often visited by DV perpetrators in this community and may be important sites for screening and intervention protocols.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Cohort Studies
  • Delivery of Health Care / statistics & numerical data*
  • Emergency Service, Hospital / statistics & numerical data
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Pennsylvania / epidemiology
  • Socioeconomic Factors
  • Spouse Abuse / prevention & control*
  • Spouse Abuse / statistics & numerical data*