Health Cares About Domestic Violence Day

Dr. Travis Stork, Co-host of daytime syndicated talk show THE DOCTORS, joins Women’s Protective Services of Lubbock, Inc. (WPS) for Health Cares About Domestic Violence Day in Lubbock on October 11, 2011. This free event begins at 11:45 am at the United Spirit Arena.

Together they join hospitals, clinics and other allied health professionals throughout Lubbock and the South Plains region by providing an educational forum to begin addressing domestic violence by identifying, responding and to resource local organizations to improve patient health and safety. The Continued Medical Education and the Continued Nursing Education will focus on information to help doctors, nurses and other allied health professionals identify domestic violence and dating violence, respond appropriately and provide referrals to those who are injured as a result of domestic violence.  Materials are designed for providers working in the primary care, ob-gyn, family planning, emergency care, mental health and inpatient settings.

Domestic violence is a health care problem of epidemic proportions in Texas and throughout the country.  Women’s Protective Services serves over 5,000 women, children and families a year.  Nationally, nearly one-third of American women (31 percent) report being physically or sexually abused by a husband or boyfriend at some point in their lives, according to a 1998 Commonwealth Fund survey. Thirty percent of Americans say they know a woman who has been physically abused by her husband or boyfriend in the past year. The rates of abuse among adolescents and within Lesbian/ Gay/ Bisexual/ Transgender communities are also staggering.  And the U.S. Justice Department found that 1,320 women were murdered by their husbands or boyfriends in 1998 –more than three women every day.

Health Care Providers Can Help!

“Many women who are murdered by their husbands or boyfriends have seen their health care provider for routine care or to treat injuries from incidents of abuse,” said Fritzi Cates, Executive Director of Women’s Protective Services. “But too often, health care providers miss this chance to help battered women because they don’t ask the right questions. Simply by routinely screening patients and giving them information and referrals, we can make an enormous difference for battered women and their children – and in some cases we can save their lives.” Many experts say that properly trained doctors and other health care providers are uniquely qualified to intervene to help battered women. Yet, a study published in 1999 by the Journal of the American Medical Association found that less than ten percent of primary care physicians routinely screen patients for partner abuse during regular office visits.  In addition to training more than 300 health professionals on domestic violence identification and intervention, Women’s Protective Services will host a community education forum for teens, young adults and parents on how healthy relationships are a critical part of in overall health.

If you are a health care professional and would like to order a Health Cares About Domestic Violence brochure, please complete this form.


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