An intervention to increase safety behaviors of abused women: results of a randomized clinical trial

Nurs Res. 2002 Nov-Dec;51(6):347-54. doi: 10.1097/00006199-200211000-00002.


Background: Although intimate partner violence is recognized as a major threat to women's health, few interventions have been developed or tested.

Objective: To test an intervention administered to abused women in order to increase safety-seeking behaviors.

Method: A two-group clinical trial randomized 75 abused women to receive six telephone intervention sessions on safety behaviors. A control group of 75 women received standard care. Women in both groups were re-interviewed at 3 months and 6 months post-initial measurement.

Results: Using repeated measures analysis of variance (ANOVA), we found significantly [F (2,146) 5.11, =.007] more adopted safety behaviors reported by women in the intervention group than by women in the control group at both the 3-month [F (91,74) = 19.70, <.001] and 6-month [F (1,74) = 15.90, <.001] interviews. The effect size (ES) of the intervention was large at 3 months (ES = 1.5) and remained substantial at 6 months (ES = 0.56).

Discussion: These findings demonstrate that an intervention to increase safety behaviors of abused women is highly effective when offered following an abusive incident and remains effective for 6 months.

Publication types

  • Clinical Trial
  • Randomized Controlled Trial

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Analysis of Variance
  • Battered Women / education*
  • Battered Women / psychology*
  • Female
  • Follow-Up Studies
  • Health Behavior*
  • Health Knowledge, Attitudes, Practice
  • Humans
  • Logistic Models
  • Nursing Assessment
  • Patient Acceptance of Health Care / psychology*
  • Patient Education as Topic / methods*
  • Psychological Theory
  • Safety Management / methods*
  • Spouse Abuse / prevention & control*
  • Spouse Abuse / psychology
  • Surveys and Questionnaires
  • Time Factors