Publications by authors named "Gene Feder"

211 Publications

Protocol for developing core outcome sets for evaluation of psychosocial interventions for children and families with experience or at risk of child maltreatment or domestic abuse.

BMJ Open 2021 08 23;11(8):e044431. Epub 2021 Aug 23.

Community Based Medicine, University of Bristol Medical School, Bristol, UK.

Introduction: Recognition that child maltreatment (CM) and domestic violence and abuse (DVA) are common and have serious and long-term adverse health consequences has resulted in policies and programmes to ensure that services respond to and safeguard children and their families. However, high-quality evidence about how services can effectively intervene is scant. The value of the current evidence base is limited partly because of the variety of outcomes and measures used in evaluative studies. One way of addressing this limitation is to develop a core outcome set (COS) which is measured and reported as a minimum standard in the context of trials and other types of evaluative research. The study described in this protocol aims to develop two discrete COSs for use in future evaluation of psychosocial interventions aimed at improving outcomes for children and families at risk or with experience of (1) CM or (2) DVA.

Methods And Analysis: A two-phase mixed methods design: (1) rapid reviews of evidence, stakeholder workshops and semistructured interviews with adult survivors of CM/DVA and parents of children who have experienced CM/DVA and (2) a three panel adapted E-Delphi Study and consensus meeting. This study protocol adheres to reporting guidance for COS protocols and has been registered on the Core Outcome Measures for Effectiveness Trials (COMET) database.

Ethics And Dissemination: We will disseminate our findings through peer-reviewed and open access publications, the COMET website and presentations at international conferences. We will engage with research networks, journal editors and funding agencies to promote awareness of the CM-COS and DVA-COS. We will work with advisory and survivor and public involvement groups to coproduce a range of survivor, policy and practice facing outputs.Approval for this study has been granted by the Research Ethics Committee at University College London.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1136/bmjopen-2020-044431DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8383853PMC
August 2021

HARMONY: a pragmatic cluster randomised controlled trial of a culturally competent systems intervention to prevent and reduce domestic violence among migrant and refugee families in general practice: study protocol.

BMJ Open 2021 07 29;11(7):e046431. Epub 2021 Jul 29.

Centre for Academic Primary Care, Bristol Medical School, University of Bristol, Bristol, UK.

Introduction: Domestic violence and abuse (DVA) is prevalent, harmful and more dangerous among diaspora communities because of the difficulty accessing DVA services, language and migration issues. Consequently, migrant/refugee women are common among primary care populations, but evidence for culturally competent DVA primary care practice is negligible. This pragmatic cluster randomised controlled trial aims to increase DVA identification and referral (primary outcomes) threefold and safety planning (secondary outcome) among diverse women attending intervention vs comparison primary care clinics. Additionally, the study plans to improve recording of DVA, ethnicity, and conduct process and economic evaluations.

Methods And Analysis: Recruitment of ≤28 primary care clinics in Melbourne, Australia with high migrant/refugee communities. Eligible clinics need ≥1 South Asian general practitioner (GP) and one of two common software programmes to enable aggregated routine data extraction by GrHanite. Intervention staff undertake three DVA training sessions from a GP educator and bilingual DVA advocate/educator. Following training, clinic staff and DVA affected women 18+ will be supported for 12 months by the advocate/educator. Comparison clinics are trained in ethnicity and DVA data entry and offer routine DVA care. Data extraction of DV identification, safety planning and referral from routine GP data in both arms. Adjusted regression analysis by intention-to-treat by staff blinded to arm. Economic evaluation will estimate cost-effectiveness and cost-utility. Process evaluation interviews and analysis with primary care staff and women will be framed by Normalisation Process Theory to maximise understanding of sustainability. Harmony will be the first primary care trial to test a culturally competent model for the care of diverse women experiencing DVA.

Ethics And Dissemination: Ethical approval from La Trobe University Human Ethics Committee (HEC18413) and dissemination by policy briefs, journal articles and conference and community presentations.

Trial Registration Number: ANZCTR- ACTRN12618001845224; Pre-results.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1136/bmjopen-2020-046431DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8323375PMC
July 2021

ADVANCE integrated group intervention to address both substance use and intimate partner abuse perpetration by men in substance use treatment: a feasibility randomised controlled trial.

BMC Public Health 2021 05 25;21(1):980. Epub 2021 May 25.

Department of Biostatistics and Health Informatics, Institute of Psychiatry, Psychology & Neuroscience, King's College London, De Crespigny Park, London, SE5 8AF, UK.

Background: Substance use is a risk factor for intimate partner abuse (IPA) perpetration. Delivering perpetrator interventions concurrently with substance use treatment shows promise.

Methods: The feasibility of conducting an efficacy and cost-effectiveness trial of the ADVANCE 16-week intervention to reduce IPA by men in substance use treatment was explored. A multicentre, parallel group individually randomised controlled feasibility trial and formative evaluation was conducted. Over three temporal cycles, 104 men who had perpetrated IPA towards a female (ex) partner in the past year were randomly allocated to receive the ADVANCE intervention + substance use treatment as usual (TAU) (n = 54) or TAU only (n = 50) and assessed 16-weeks post-randomisation. Participants' (ex) partners were offered support and 27 provided outcome data. Thirty-one staff and 12 men who attended the intervention participated in focus groups or interviews that were analysed using the framework approach. Pre-specified criteria assessed the feasibility of progression to a definitive trial: 1) ≥ 60% of eligible male participants recruited; 2) intervention acceptable to staff and male participants; 3) ≥ 70% of participants followed-up and 4) levels of substance use and 5) IPA perpetrated by men in the intervention arm did not increase from average baseline level at 16-weeks post-randomisation.

Results: 70.7% (104/147) of eligible men were recruited. The formative evaluation confirmed the intervention's acceptability. Therapeutic alliance and session satisfaction were rated highly. The overall median rate of intervention session attendance (of 14 compulsory sessions) was 28.6% (range 14.3-64.3% by the third cycle). 49.0% (51/104) of men and 63.0% (17/27) of their (ex) partners were followed-up 16-weeks post-randomisation. This increased to 100% of men and women by cycle three. At follow-up, neither substance use nor IPA perpetration had worsened for men in the intervention arm.

Conclusions: It was feasible to deliver the ADVANCE intervention in substance use treatment services, although it proved difficult to collect data from female (ex)partners. While some progression criteria were met, others were not, although improvements were demonstrated by the third cycle. Lessons learned will be implemented into the study design for a definitive trial of the ADVANCE intervention.

Trial Registration: ISRCTN79435190 prospectively registered 22nd May 2018.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1186/s12889-021-11012-3DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8147906PMC
May 2021

PRimary care rEsponse to domestic violence and abuse in the COvid-19 panDEmic (PRECODE): protocol of a rapid mixed-methods study in the UK.

BMC Fam Pract 2021 05 12;22(1):91. Epub 2021 May 12.

Nuffield Department of Primary Care Health Sciences, University of Oxford, Oxford, UK.

Background: The implementation of lockdowns in the UK during the COVID-19 pandemic resulted in a system switch to remote primary care consulting at the same time as the incidence of domestic violence and abuse (DVA) increased. Lockdown-specific barriers to disclosure of DVA reduced the opportunity for DVA detection and referral. The PRECODE (PRimary care rEsponse to domestic violence and abuse in the COvid-19 panDEmic) study will comprise quantitative analysis of the impact of the pandemic on referrals from IRIS (Identification and Referral to Improve Safety) trained general practices to DVA agencies in the UK and qualitative analysis of the experiences of clinicians responding to patients affected by DVA and adaptations they have made transitioning to remote DVA training and patient support.

Methods/design: Using a rapid mixed method design, PRECODE will explore and explain the dynamics of DVA referrals and support before and during the pandemic on a national scale using qualitative data and over four years of referrals time series data. We will undertake interrupted-time series and non-linear regression analysis, including sensitivity analyses, on time series of referrals to DVA services from routinely collected data to evaluate the impact of the pandemic and associated lockdowns on referrals to the IRIS Programme, and analyse key determinants associated with changes in referrals. We will also conduct an interview- and observation-based qualitative study to understand the variation, relevance and feasibility of primary care responses to DVA before and during the pandemic and its aftermath. The triangulation of quantitative and qualitative findings using rapid analysis and synthesis will enable the articulation of multiscale trends in primary care responses to DVA and complex mechanisms by which these responses have changed during the pandemic.

Discussion: Our findings will inform the implementation of remote primary care and DVA service responses as services re-configure. Understanding the adaptation of clinical and service responses to DVA during the pandemic is crucial for the development of evidence-based, effective remote support and referral beyond the pandemic.

Trial Registration: PRECODE is an observational epidemiologic study, not an intervention evaluation or trial. We will not be reporting results of an intervention on human participants.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1186/s12875-021-01447-3DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8115859PMC
May 2021

'It felt like there was always someone there for us': Supporting children affected by domestic violence and abuse who are identified by general practice.

Health Soc Care Community 2021 May 7. Epub 2021 May 7.

Centre for Academic Primary Care, Bristol Medical School, Population Health Sciences, University of Bristol, Bristol, UK.

One in five children in the UK are affected by domestic violence and abuse. However, primary care clinicians (GPs and nurses) struggle to effectively identify and support children and young people living in homes where it is present. The IRIS+ (Enhanced Identification and Referral to Improve Safety) training and advocacy support intervention aimed to improve how clinicians respond to children and young people affected by domestic violence and abuse. IRIS+ training was delivered as part of a feasibility study to four general practices in an urban area in England (UK). Our mixed method design included interviews and questionnaires about the IRIS+ intervention with general practice patients, including children and young people as well as with clinicians and advocacy service providers. We collected the number of identifications and referrals by clinicians of children experiencing domestic violence and abuse through a retrospective search of medical and agency records 10 months after the intervention. Forty-nine children exposed to domestic violence and abuse were recorded in medical records. Thirty-five children were referred to a specialist domestic violence and abuse support service over a period of 10 months. Of these, 22 received direct or indirect support. The qualitative findings indicated that children benefitted from being referred by clinicians to the service. However, several barriers at the patient and professional level prevented children and young people from being identified and supported. Some of these barriers can be addressed through modifications to professional training and guidance, but others require systematic and structural changes to the way health and social care services work with children affected by domestic violence and abuse.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/hsc.13385DOI Listing
May 2021

Perceptions of Peer Support for Victim-Survivors of Sexual Violence and Abuse: An Exploratory Study With Key Stakeholders.

J Interpers Violence 2021 Apr 15:8862605211007931. Epub 2021 Apr 15.

University of Bristol, UK.

Experiences of sexual violence, childhood sexual abuse, and sexual assault are common across all societies. These experiences damage physical and mental health, coping ability, and relationships with others. Given the breadth and magnitude of impacts, it is imperative that there are effective, accessible services to support victim-survivors, ease suffering, and empower people to cope, recover and thrive. Service provision for this population in the United Kingdom is complex and has been hit substantially by austerity. Since positive social support can buffer against negative impacts, peer support may be an effective approach. The aim of this exploratory study was to capture the views and perspectives of professional stakeholders concerning service provision for victim-survivors, particularly perceptions of peer support.In-depth semistructured interviews were conducted in the UK during 2018 with six professional stakeholders, highly experienced in the field of service provision for victim-survivors of sexual violence and abuse. An abductive approach to analysis was used, applying principles from thematic analysis. Our sample comprised four females and two males, and their roles included psychiatrist, general practitioner, service improvement facilitator, and senior positions within victim-survivor organizations.Interviews highlighted models of peer support for this population, good practice and safety considerations, and a lack of uniformity regarding quality and governance standards across the sector. Findings indicated that current funding models impact negatively on victim-survivor services, and that provision is fragmented and insufficient across statutory and not-for-profit sectors. The influence of the medical model upon service provision was evident, which resulted in apprehension around support delivered in less-usual forms-including peer support. Further research is needed to explore the potential of peer support for victim-survivors of sexual violence and abuse.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1177/08862605211007931DOI Listing
April 2021

Shared decision making in consultations for hypertension: Qualitative study in general practice.

Health Expect 2021 Jun 5;24(3):917-929. Epub 2021 Apr 5.

Centre for Academic Primary Care, Population Health Sciences, Bristol Medical School, Bristol, UK.

Background: Hypertension is mainly managed in primary care. Shared decision making is widely recommended as an approach to treatment decision making. However, no studies have investigated; in detail, what happens during primary care consultations for hypertension.

Aim: To understand patients' and clinicians' experience of shared decision making for hypertension in primary care, in order to propose how it might be better supported.

Design: Longitudinal qualitative study.

Setting: Five general practices in south-west England.

Method: Interviews with a purposive sample of patients with hypertension, and with the health-care practitioners they consulted, along with observations of clinical consultations, for up to 6 appointments. Interviews and consultations were audio-recorded and observational field notes taken. Data were analysed thematically.

Results: Forty-six interviews and 18 consultations were observed, with 11 patients and nine health-care practitioners (five GPs, one pharmacist and three nurses). Little shared decision making was described by participants or observed. Often patients' understanding of their hypertension was limited, and they were not aware there were treatment choices. Consultations provided few opportunities for patients and clinicians to reach a shared understanding of their treatment choices. Opportunities for patients to engage in choices were limited by structured consultations and the distribution of decisions across consultations.

Conclusion: For shared decision making to be better supported, consultations need to provide opportunities for patients to learn about their condition, to understand that there are treatment choices, and to discuss these choices with clinicians.

Patient Or Public Contribution: A patient group contributed to the design of this study.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/hex.13234DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8235900PMC
June 2021

Boundary-Work and the Distribution of Care for Survivors of Domestic Violence and Abuse in Primary Care Settings: Perspectives From U.K. Clinicians.

Qual Health Res 2021 Jul 22;31(9):1697-1709. Epub 2021 Mar 22.

Queen Mary University of London, London, United Kingdom.

Health care encounters are opportunities for primary care practitioners to identify women experiencing domestic violence and abuse (DVA). Increasing DVA support in primary care is a global policy priority but discussion about DVA during consultations remains rare. This article explores how primary care teams in the United Kingdom negotiate the boundaries of their responsibilities for providing DVA support. In-depth interviews were undertaken with 13 general practitioners (GPs) in two urban areas of the United Kingdom. Interviews were analyzed thematically. Analysis focused on the boundary practices participants undertook to establish their professional remit regarding abuse. GPs maintained permeable boundaries with specialist DVA support services. This enabled ongoing negotiation of the role played by clinicians in identifying DVA. This permeability was achieved by limiting the boundaries of the GP role in the care of patients with DVA to identification, with the work of providing support distributed to local specialist DVA agencies.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1177/1049732321998299DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8438775PMC
July 2021

Domestic violence during the pandemic.

BMJ 2021 03 17;372:n722. Epub 2021 Mar 17.

IRISi, Bristol, UK.

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http://dx.doi.org/10.1136/bmj.n722DOI Listing
March 2021

Trauma-informed approaches to primary and community mental health care: protocol for a mixed-methods systematic review.

BMJ Open 2021 02 18;11(2):e042112. Epub 2021 Feb 18.

Centre for Academic Primary Care, Population Health Sciences, University of Bristol, Bristol, UK.

Introduction: Exposure to different types of psychological trauma may lead to a range of adverse effects on trauma survivors, including poor mental and physical health, economic, social and cognitive functioning outcomes. Trauma-informed (TI) approaches to care are defined as a service system grounded in and directed by an understanding of how trauma affects the survivors' neurological, biological, physiological and social development. TI service system involves training of all staff, service improvements and sometimes screening for trauma experiences. The UK started incorporating TI approaches into the National Health Service. While policies recommend it, the evidence base for TI approaches to healthcare is not well established. We aim to conduct a systematic review to synthesise evidence on TI approaches in primary and community mental healthcare globally.

Methods And Analysis: We will undertake a systematic search for primary studies in Medline, Embase, PsycINFO, Cumulative Index to Nursing and Allied Health Literature, Cochrane library, websites of organisations involved in the development and implementation of TI approaches in healthcare, and databases of thesis and dissertation. Included studies will be in English published between 1990 and February 2020. Two reviewers will independently perform study selection with data extraction and quality appraisal undertaken by one reviewer and checked for accuracy by a second reviewer. A results-based convergent synthesis will be conducted where quantitative (narratively) and qualitative (thematically) evidence will be analysed separately and then integrated using another method of synthesis. We set up a trauma survivor group and a professional group to consult throughout this review.

Ethics And Dissemination: There is no requirement for ethical approval for this systematic review as no empirical data will be collected. The findings will be disseminated through a peer-reviewed publication, scientific and practitioner conferences, and policy briefings targeted at local and national policy makers.

Prospero Registration Number: CRD42020164752.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1136/bmjopen-2020-042112DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7896604PMC
February 2021

Risk factors for intimate partner violence and abuse among adolescents and young adults: findings from a UK population-based cohort.

Wellcome Open Res 2020 21;5:176. Epub 2021 Jan 21.

Department of Population Health Sciences, University of Bristol, Bristol, UK.

Approximately one-third of young people in the UK have suffered intimate partner violence and abuse (IPVA) on reaching adulthood. We need interventions to prevent IPVA in this population, but there is a lack of evidence on who is at greatest risk. We analysed questionnaire data from 3,279 participants of the Avon Longitudinal Study of Parents and Children population-based birth cohort. We estimated the prevalence of IPVA victimisation and perpetration by age 21, by sex, demographic, parenting, mental health, externalising behaviour (e.g. smoking), educational, employment, and adverse childhood factors. Overall, 29% of males and 41% of females reported IPVA victimisation, with 20% and 25% reporting perpetration, respectively (16% and 22% both). The most common type of IPVA was emotional, followed by physical, then sexual. History of anxiety, self-harm, anti-social behaviour, cannabis or illicit (non-cannabis) drug use, or risky sexual behaviour among males and females were associated with a 50% increase in likelihood of IPVA (victimisation or perpetration). Males reporting depression, sexual abuse (not by an intimate partner), witnessing domestic violence, or parental separation were also more likely to experience IPVA. Extreme parental monitoring, high academic achievement during adolescence, and NEET (not being in education, employment, or training) status in young adulthood were associated with reduced risks of IPVA. A range of demographic, mental health, and behavioural factors were associated with increased prevalence of IPVA victimisation or perpetration. Further study of likely complex pathways from these factors to IPVA, to inform primary prevention, is needed.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.12688/wellcomeopenres.16106.3DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7848855PMC
January 2021

Reaching everyone in general practice? Feasibility of an integrated domestic violence training and support intervention in primary care.

BMC Fam Pract 2021 01 12;22(1):19. Epub 2021 Jan 12.

Centre for Academic Primary Care, Bristol Medical School, University of Bristol, Canynge Hall, 39 Whatley Road, Bristol, BS8 2PS, UK.

Background: Primary care needs to respond effectively to patients experiencing or perpetrating domestic violence and abuse (DVA) and their children, but there is uncertainty about the value of integrated programmes. The aim of the study was to develop and test the feasibility of an integrated primary care system-level training and support intervention, called IRIS+ (Enhanced Identification and Referral to Improve Safety), for all patients affected by DVA. IRIS+ was an adaptation of the original IRIS (Identification and Referral to Improve Safety) model designed to reach female survivors of DVA.

Methods: Observation of training; pre/post intervention questionnaires with clinicians and patients; data extracted from medical records and DVA agency; semi-structured interviews with clinicians, service providers and referred adults and children. Data collection took place between May 2017 and April 2018. Mixed method analysis was undertaken to triangulate data from various sources to assess the feasibility and acceptability of the intervention.

Results: Clinicians and service providers believed that the IRIS+ intervention had filled a service gap and was a valuable resource in identifying and referring women, men and children affected by DVA. Despite increased levels of preparedness reported by clinicians after training in managing the complexity of DVA in their practice, the intervention proved to be insufficient to catalyse identification and specialist referral of men and direct identification and referral (without their non-abusive parents) of children and young people. The study also revealed that reports provided to general practice by other agencies are important sources of information about adult and children patients affected by DVA. However, in the absence of guidance about how to use this information in patient care, there are uncertainties and variation in practice.

Conclusions: The study demonstrates that the IRIS+ intervention is not feasible in the form and timeframe we evaluated. Further adaptation is required to achieve identification and referral of men and children in primary care: an enhanced focus on engagement with men, direct engagement with children, and improved guidance and training on responding to reports of DVA received from other agencies.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1186/s12875-020-01297-5DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7802315PMC
January 2021

Adaptive work in the primary health care response to domestic violence in occupied Palestinian territory: a qualitative evaluation using Extended Normalisation Process Theory.

BMC Fam Pract 2021 01 2;22(1). Epub 2021 Jan 2.

London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine, Department of Global Health and Development, Faculty of Public Health & Policy, 15-17 Tavistock Place, London, WC1H 9SH, UK.

Background: A health system response to domestic violence against women is a global priority. However, little is known about how these health system interventions work in low-and-middle-income countries where there are greater structural barriers. Studies have failed to explore how context-intervention interactions affect implementation processes. Healthcare Responding to Violence and Abuse aimed to strengthen the primary healthcare response to domestic violence in occupied Palestinian territory. We explored the adaptive work that participants engaged in to negotiate contextual constraints.

Methods: The qualitative study involved 18 participants at two primary health care clinics and included five women patients, seven primary health care providers, two clinic case managers, two Ministry of Health based gender-based violence focal points and two domestic violence trainers. Semi-structured interviews were used to elicit participants' experiences of engaging with HERA, challenges encountered and how these were negotiated. Data were analysed using thematic analysis drawing on Extended Normalisation Process Theory. We collected clinic data on identification and referral of domestic violence cases and training attendance.

Results: HERA interacted with political, sociocultural and economic aspects of the context in Palestine. The political occupation restricted women's movement and access to support services, whilst the concomitant lack of police protection left providers and women feeling exposed to acts of family retaliation. This was interwoven with cultural values that influenced participants' choices as they negotiated normative structures that reinforce violence against women. Participants engaged in adaptive work to negotiate these challenges and ensure that implementation was safe and workable. Narratives highlight the use of subterfuge, hidden forms of agency, governing behaviours, controls over knowledge and discretionary actions. The care pathway did not work as anticipated, as most women chose not to access external support. An emergent feature of the intervention was the ability of the clinic case managers to improvise their role.

Conclusions: Flexible use of ENPT helped to surface practices the providers and women patients engaged in to make HERA workable. The findings have implications for the transferability of evidenced based interventions on health system response to violence against women in diverse contexts, and how HERA can be sustained in the long-term.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1186/s12875-020-01338-zDOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7777212PMC
January 2021

Are We Asking Too Much of the Health Sector? Exploring the Readiness of Brazilian Primary Healthcare to Respond to Domestic Violence Against Women.

Int J Health Policy Manag 2020 Dec 8. Epub 2020 Dec 8.

London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine, London, UK.

Background: There is growing recognition of the health sector's potential role in addressing domestic violence (DV) against women. Although Brazil has a comprehensive policy framework on violence against women (VAW), implementation has been slow and incomplete in primary healthcare (PHC), and little is known about the implementation challenges. This paper aims to assess the readiness of two PHC clinics in urban Brazil to integrate an intervention to strengthen their DV response.

Methods: We conducted 20 semi-structured interviews with health managers and health providers; a document analysis of VAW and DV policies from São Paulo and Brazil; and 2 structured facility observations. Data were analysed using thematic analysis.

Results: Findings from our readiness assessment revealed gaps in both current policy and practice needing to be addressed, particularly with regards to governance and leadership, health service organisation and health workforce. DV received less political recognition, being perceived as a lower priority compared to other health issues. Lack of clear guidance from the central and municipal levels emerged as a crucial factor that weakened DV policy implementation both by providers and managers. Furthermore, responses to DV lost visibility, as they were diluted within generic violence responses. The organizational structure of the PHC system in São Paulo, which prioritised the number of consultations and household visits as the main performance indicators, was an additional difficulty in legitimising healthcare providers' time to address DV. Individual-level challenges reported by providers included lack of time and knowledge of how to respond, as well as fears of dealing with DV.

Conclusion: Assessing readiness is critical because it helps to evaluate what services and infrastructure are already in place, also identifying obstacles that may hinder adaptation and integration of an intervention to strengthen the response to DV before implementation.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.34172/ijhpm.2020.237DOI Listing
December 2020

Categories and health impacts of intimate partner violence in the World Health Organization multi-country study on women's health and domestic violence.

Int J Epidemiol 2021 05;50(2):652-662

Department of Population Health Sciences, Centre for Academic Primary Care, University of Bristol, Bristol, UK.

Background: Intimate partner violence (IPV) damages health and is costly to families and society. Individuals experience different forms and combinations of IPV; better understanding of the respective health effects of these can help develop differentiated responses. This study explores the associations of different categories of IPV on women's mental and physical health.

Methods: Using data from the World Health Organization (WHO) Multi-Country Study on Women's Health and Domestic Violence, multilevel mixed effects logistic regression modelling was used to analyse associations between categories of abuse (physical IPV alone, psychological IPV alone, sexual IPV alone, combined physical and psychological IPV, and combined sexual with psychological and/or physical IPV) with measures of physical and mental health, including self-reported symptoms, suicidal thoughts and attempts, and nights in hospital.

Results: Countries varied in prevalence of different categories of IPV. All categories of IPV were associated with poorer health outcomes; the two combined abuse categories were the most damaging. The most common category was combined abuse involving sexual IPV, which was associated with the poorest health [attempted suicide: odds ratio (OR): 10.78, 95% confidence interval (CI) 8.37-13.89, thoughts of suicide: 8.47, 7.03-10.02, memory loss: 2.93, 2.41-3.56]. Combined psychological and physical IPV was associated with the next poorest outcomes (attempted suicide: 5.67, 4.23-7.60, thoughts of suicide: 4.41, 3.63-5.37, memory loss: 2.33, 1.88-2.87-).

Conclusions: Understanding the prevalence and health impact of different forms and categories of IPV is crucial to risk assessment, tailoring responses to individuals and planning services. Previous analyses that focused on singular forms of IPV likely underestimated the more harmful impacts of combined forms of abuse.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/ije/dyaa220DOI Listing
May 2021

Women's experiences and expectations after disclosure of intimate partner abuse to a healthcare provider: A qualitative meta-synthesis.

BMJ Open 2020 11 27;10(11):e041339. Epub 2020 Nov 27.

Department of General Practice, The University of Melbourne, Melbourne, Victoria, Australia.

Objective: To identify and synthesise the experiences and expectations of women victim/survivors of intimate partner abuse (IPA) following disclosure to a healthcare provider (HCP).

Methods: The databases MEDLINE, Embase, CINAHL, PsychINFO, SocINDEX, ASSIA and the Cochrane Library were searched in February 2020. Included studies needed to focus on women's experiences with and expectations of HCPs after disclosure of IPA. We considered primary studies using qualitative methods for both data collection and analysis published since 2004. Studies conducted in any country, in any type of healthcare setting, were included. The quality of individual studies was assessed using an adaptation of the Critical Appraisal Skills Programme checklist for qualitative studies. The confidence in the overall evidence base was determined using Grading of Recommendations, Assessment, Development and Evaluations (GRADE)-Confidence in the Evidence from Reviews of Qualitative Research methods. Thematic synthesis was used for analysis.

Results: Thirty-one papers describing 30 studies were included in the final review. These were conducted in a range of health settings, predominantly in the USA and other high-income countries. All studies were in English. Four main themes were developed through the analysis, describing women's experiences and expectations of HCPs: (1) connection through kindness and care; (2) see the evil, hear the evil, speak the evil; (3) do more than just listen; and (4) plant the right seed. If these key expectations were absent from care, it resulted in a range of negative emotional impacts for women.

Conclusions: Our findings strongly align with the principles of woman-centred care, indicating that women value emotional connection, practical support through action and advocacy and an approach that recognises their autonomy and is tailored to their individual needs. Drawing on the evidence, we have developed a best practice model to guide practitioners in how to deliver woman-centred care. This review has critical implications for practice, highlighting the simplicity of what HCPs can do to support women experiencing IPA, although its applicability to low-income and-middle income settings remains to be explored.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1136/bmjopen-2020-041339DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7703445PMC
November 2020

Help seeking by male victims of domestic violence and abuse: an example of an integrated mixed methods synthesis of systematic review evidence defining methodological terms.

BMC Health Serv Res 2020 Nov 26;20(1):1085. Epub 2020 Nov 26.

Centre for Academic Primary Care, Population Health Sciences, Bristol Medical School, University of Bristol, Canynge Hall, 39 Whatley Road, Bristol, BS8 2PS, England.

Background: Domestic violence and abuse is a violation of human rights which damages the health and wellbeing of victims, their families and their friends. There has been less research on the experiences and support needs of male victims than those of women. Historically research on men's experiences has not focused on what constitutes effective, needs-led service provision. The aim of this paper was to conduct an integrated mixed methods synthesis of systematic review evidence on the topic of help-seeking by male victims of domestic violence and abuse.

Methods: An integrated mixed methods synthesis approach was taken to enhance our understanding of the complex phenomenon of help seeking by, and service provision to male victims. This process also identifies gaps in the evidence. Using previously identified systematic review data; mixed methods data from four primary-level service evaluation studies, along with expert and patient consultation were used to develop research propositions. Primary-level qualitative interview and survey data from 12 studies of men experiences were mapped onto the propositions to support them.

Results: Fourteen propositions were composed. Seven propositions were supported or at least partly supported by the qualitative data. These supported propositions were used to make recommendations for policy and practice particularly concerning service preferences of male victims. The remaining seven propositions were not specifically supported by the qualitative data. These unsupported propositions were used to develop research recommendations concerning the need to further understand the potential blurred boundaries of victim-perpetrator, hybrid perpetrator-victim experiences, men who are/have been victims of childhood sexual abuse and determining the level of risk for men. They also highlight the need to produce better guidance for the response of the police & the criminal justice system. Finally, they highlight the need to produce the most appropriate service for men in terms of access, linkage, substance/alcohol abuse, mental health, sexuality, and race.

Conclusion: Integrated mixed-methods synthesis of systematic review evidence is a relatively novel approach. This approach can lead to recommendations for policy and practice as well as highlighting gaps in the research agenda as shown in this example.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1186/s12913-020-05931-xDOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7689389PMC
November 2020

Barriers to women's disclosure of domestic violence in health services in Palestine: qualitative interview-based study.

BMC Public Health 2020 Nov 26;20(1):1795. Epub 2020 Nov 26.

Centre for Academic Primary Care, Population Health Sciences, Bristol Medical School, Faculty of Health Sciences, Canynge Hall, 39 Whatley Road, Bristol, BS8 2PS, UK.

Background: Domestic violence (DV) damages health and requires a global public health response and engagement of clinical services. Recent surveys show that 27% of married Palestinian women experienced some form of violence from their husbands over a 12 months' period, but only 5% had sought formal help, and rarely from health services. Across the globe, barriers to disclosure of DV have been recorded, including self-blame, fear of the consequences and lack of knowledge of services. This is the first qualitative study to address barriers to disclosure within health services for Palestinian women.

Methods: In-depth interviews were carried out with 20 women who had experienced DV. They were recruited from a non-governmental organisation offering social and legal support. Interviews were recorded, transcribed and translated into English and the data were analysed thematically.

Results: Women encountered barriers at individual, health care service and societal levels. Lack of knowledge of available services, concern about the health care primary focus on physical issues, lack of privacy in health consultations, lack of trust in confidentiality, fear of being labelled 'mentally ill' and losing access to their children were all highlighted. Women wished for health professionals to take the initiative in enquiring about DV. Wider issues concerned women's social and economic dependency on their husbands which led to fears about transgressing social and cultural norms by speaking out. Women feared being blamed and ostracised by family members and others, or experiencing an escalation of violence.

Conclusions: Palestinian women's agency to be proactive in help-seeking for DV is clearly limited. Our findings can inform training of health professionals in Palestine to address these barriers, to increase awareness of the link between DV and many common presentations such as depression, to ask sensitively about DV in private, reassure women about confidentiality, and increase awareness among women of the role that health services can play in DV.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1186/s12889-020-09907-8DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7691108PMC
November 2020

Barriers to women's disclosure of domestic violence in health services in Palestine: qualitative interview-based study.

BMC Public Health 2020 Nov 26;20(1):1795. Epub 2020 Nov 26.

Centre for Academic Primary Care, Population Health Sciences, Bristol Medical School, Faculty of Health Sciences, Canynge Hall, 39 Whatley Road, Bristol, BS8 2PS, UK.

Background: Domestic violence (DV) damages health and requires a global public health response and engagement of clinical services. Recent surveys show that 27% of married Palestinian women experienced some form of violence from their husbands over a 12 months' period, but only 5% had sought formal help, and rarely from health services. Across the globe, barriers to disclosure of DV have been recorded, including self-blame, fear of the consequences and lack of knowledge of services. This is the first qualitative study to address barriers to disclosure within health services for Palestinian women.

Methods: In-depth interviews were carried out with 20 women who had experienced DV. They were recruited from a non-governmental organisation offering social and legal support. Interviews were recorded, transcribed and translated into English and the data were analysed thematically.

Results: Women encountered barriers at individual, health care service and societal levels. Lack of knowledge of available services, concern about the health care primary focus on physical issues, lack of privacy in health consultations, lack of trust in confidentiality, fear of being labelled 'mentally ill' and losing access to their children were all highlighted. Women wished for health professionals to take the initiative in enquiring about DV. Wider issues concerned women's social and economic dependency on their husbands which led to fears about transgressing social and cultural norms by speaking out. Women feared being blamed and ostracised by family members and others, or experiencing an escalation of violence.

Conclusions: Palestinian women's agency to be proactive in help-seeking for DV is clearly limited. Our findings can inform training of health professionals in Palestine to address these barriers, to increase awareness of the link between DV and many common presentations such as depression, to ask sensitively about DV in private, reassure women about confidentiality, and increase awareness among women of the role that health services can play in DV.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1186/s12889-020-09907-8DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7691108PMC
November 2020

Psychological therapies for women who experience intimate partner violence.

Cochrane Database Syst Rev 2020 07 1;7:CD013017. Epub 2020 Jul 1.

Department of General Practice, The University of Melbourne, Melbourne, Australia.

Background: Intimate partner violence (IPV) against women is prevalent and strongly associated with mental health problems. Women experiencing IPV attend health services frequently for mental health problems. The World Health Organization recommends that women who have experienced IPV and have a mental health diagnosis should receive evidence-based mental health treatments. However, it is not known if psychological therapies work for women in the context of IPV and whether they cause harm.

Objectives: To assess the effectiveness of psychological therapies for women who experience IPV on the primary outcomes of depression, self-efficacy and an indicator of harm (dropouts) at six- to 12-months' follow-up, and on secondary outcomes of other mental health symptoms, anxiety, quality of life, re-exposure to IPV, safety planning and behaviours, use of healthcare and IPV services, and social support.

Search Methods: We searched the Cochrane Common Mental Disorders Controlled Trials Register (CCMDCTR), CENTRAL, MEDLINE, Embase, CINAHL, PsycINFO, and three other databases, to the end of October 2019. We also searched international trials registries to identify unpublished or ongoing trials and handsearched selected journals, reference lists of included trials and grey literature.

Selection Criteria: We included randomised controlled trials (RCTs), quasi-RCTs, cluster-RCTs and cross-over trials of psychological therapies with women aged 16 years and older who self-reported recent or lifetime experience of IPV. We included trials if women also experienced co-existing mental health diagnoses or substance abuse issues, or both. Psychological therapies included a wide range of interventions that targeted cognition, motivation and behaviour compared with usual care, no treatment, delayed or minimal interventions. We classified psychological therapies according to Cochrane Common Mental Disorders's psychological therapies list.

Data Collection And Analysis: Two review authors extracted data and undertook 'Risk of Bias' assessment. Treatment effects were compared between experimental and comparator interventions at short-term (up to six months post-baseline), medium-term (six to under 12 months, primary outcome time point), and long-term follow-up (12 months and above). We used standardised mean difference (SMD) for continuous and odds ratio (OR) for dichotomous outcomes, and used random-effects meta-analysis, due to high heterogeneity across trials.

Main Results: We included 33 psychological trials involving 5517 women randomly assigned to experimental (2798 women, 51%) and comparator interventions (2719 women, 49%). Psychological therapies included 11 integrative therapies, nine humanistic therapies, six cognitive behavioural therapy, four third-wave cognitive behavioural therapies and three other psychologically-orientated interventions. There were no trials classified as psychodynamic therapies. Most trials were from high-income countries (19 in USA, three in Iran, two each in Australia and Greece, and one trial each in China, India, Kenya, Nigeria, Pakistan, Spain and UK), among women recruited from healthcare, community, shelter or refuge settings, or a combination of any or all of these. Psychological therapies were mostly delivered face-to-face (28 trials), but varied by length of treatment (two to 50 sessions) and staff delivering therapies (social workers, nurses, psychologists, community health workers, family doctors, researchers). The average sample size was 82 women (14 to 479), aged 37 years on average, and 66% were unemployed. Half of the women were married or living with a partner and just over half of the participants had experienced IPV in the last 12 months (17 trials), 6% in the past two years (two trials) and 42% during their lifetime (14 trials). Whilst 20 trials (61%) described reliable low-risk random-sampling strategies, only 12 trials (36%) described reliable procedures to conceal the allocation of participant status. While 19 trials measured women's depression, only four trials measured depression as a continuous outcome at medium-term follow-up. These showed a probable beneficial effect of psychological therapies in reducing depression (SMD -0.24, 95% CI -0.47 to -0.01; four trials, 600 women; moderate-certainty evidence). However, for self-efficacy, there may be no evidence of a difference between groups (SMD -0.12, 95% CI -0.33 to 0.09; one trial with medium-term follow-up data, 346 women; low-certainty evidence). Further, there may be no difference between the number of women who dropped out from the experimental or comparator intervention groups, an indicator of no harm (OR 1.04, 95% CI 0.75 to 1.44; five trials with medium-term follow-up data, 840 women; low-certainty evidence). Although no trials reported adverse events from psychological therapies or participation in the trial, only one trial measured harm outcomes using a validated scale. For secondary outcomes, trials measured anxiety only at short-term follow-up, showing that psychological therapies may reduce anxiety symptoms (SMD -0.96, 95% CI -1.29 to -0.63; four trials, 158 women; low-certainty evidence). However, within medium-term follow-up, low-certainty evidence revealed that there may be no evidence between groups for the outcomes safety planning (SMD 0.04, 95% CI -0.18 to 0.25; one trial, 337 women), post-traumatic stress disorder (SMD -0.24, 95% CI -0.54 to 0.06; four trials, 484 women) or re-exposure to any form of IPV (SMD 0.03, 95% CI -0.14 to 0.2; two trials, 547 women).

Authors' Conclusions: There is evidence that for women who experience IPV, psychological therapies probably reduce depression and may reduce anxiety. However, we are uncertain whether psychological therapies improve other outcomes (self-efficacy, post-traumatic stress disorder, re-exposure to IPV, safety planning) and there are limited data on harm. Thus, while psychological therapies probably improve emotional health, it is unclear if women's ongoing needs for safety, support and holistic healing from complex trauma are addressed by this approach. There is a need for more interventions focused on trauma approaches and more rigorous trials (with consistent outcomes at similar follow-up time points), as we were unable to synthesise much of the research.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/14651858.CD013017.pub2DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7390063PMC
July 2020

Research priorities in advanced heart failure: James Lind alliance priority setting partnership.

Open Heart 2020 06;7(1)

Population Health Sciences, Bristol Medical School, University of Bristol, Bristol, UK

Objective: To determine research priorities in advanced heart failure (HF) for patients, carers and healthcare professionals.

Methods: Priority setting partnership using the systematic James Lind Alliance method for ranking and setting research priorities. An initial open survey of patients, carers and healthcare professionals identified respondents' questions, which were categorised to produce a list of summary research questions; questions already answered in existing literature were removed. In a second survey of patients, carers and healthcare professionals, respondents ranked the summary research questions in order of priority. The top 25 unanswered research priorities were then considered at a face-to-face workshop using nominal group technique to agree on a 'top 10'.

Results: 192 respondents submitted 489 responses each containing one or more research uncertainty. Out-of-scope questions (35) were removed, and collating the responses produced 80 summary questions. Questions already answered in the literature (15) were removed. In the second survey, 65 questions were ranked by 128 respondents. The top 10 priorities were developed at a consensus meeting of stakeholders and included a focus on quality of life, psychological support, the impact on carers, role of the charity sector and managing prognostic uncertainty. Ranked priorities by physicians and patients were remarkably divergent.

Conclusions: Engaging stakeholders in setting research priorities led to a novel set of research questions that might not have otherwise been considered. These priorities can be used by researchers and funders to direct future research towards the areas which matter most to people living with advanced HF.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1136/openhrt-2020-001258DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7328807PMC
June 2020

Sharing reports about domestic violence and abuse with general practitioners: a qualitative interview study.

BMC Fam Pract 2020 06 23;21(1):117. Epub 2020 Jun 23.

Bristol Medical School (Population Health Sciences), University of Bristol, Canynge Hall, 39 Whatley Road, Bristol, BS8 2PS, UK.

Background: Domestic violence and abuse (DVA) is common and damaging to health. UK national guidance advocates a multi-agency response to DVA, and domestic homicide reviews consistently recommend improved information-sharing between agencies. Identification of patients experiencing DVA in general practice may come from external information shared with the practice, such as police incident reports and multi-agency risk assessment conference (MARAC) reports. The aim of this study was to explore the views of general practitioners (GPs) and the police about sharing reports about DVA with GPs.

Methods: Qualitative semi-structured interviews were conducted with GPs, police staff and a partnership manager. Participants were located across England and Wales. Thematic analysis was undertaken.

Results: Interviews were conducted with 23 GPs, six police staff and one former partnership manager. Experiences of information-sharing with GPs about DVA varied. Participants described the relevance and value of external reports to GPs to help address the health consequences of DVA and safeguard patients. They balanced competing priorities when managing this information in the electronic medical record, namely visibility to GPs versus the risk of unintended disclosure to patients. GPs also spoke of the judgements they made about exploring DVA with patients based on external reports, which varied between abusive and non-abusive adults and children. Some felt constrained by short general practice consultations. Some police and GPs reflected on a loss of control when information about DVA was shared between agencies, and the risk of unintended consequences. Both police and GPs highlighted the importance of clear information and a shared understanding about responsibility for action.

Conclusion: GPs regarded external reports about DVA as relevant to their role, but safely recording this information in the electronic medical record and using it to support patients required complex judgements. Both GPs and police staff emphasised the importance of clarity of information and responsibility for action when information was shared between agencies about patients affected by DVA.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1186/s12875-020-01171-4DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7313185PMC
June 2020

Disruption of a primary health care domestic violence and abuse service in two London boroughs: interrupted time series evaluation.

BMC Health Serv Res 2020 Jun 22;20(1):569. Epub 2020 Jun 22.

Institute of Population Sciences, Queen Mary University London, London, UK.

Background: Domestic violence and abuse (DVA) is experienced by about 1/3 of women globally and remains a major health concern worldwide. IRIS (Identification and Referral to Improve Safety of women affected by DVA) is a complex, system-level, training and support programme, designed to improve the primary healthcare response to DVA. Following a successful trial in England, since 2011 IRIS has been implemented in eleven London boroughs. In two boroughs the service was disrupted temporarily. This study evaluates the impact of that service disruption.

Methods: We used anonymised data on daily referrals received by DVA service providers from general practices in two IRIS implementation boroughs that had service disruption for a period of time (six and three months). In line with previous work we refer to these as boroughs B and C. The primary outcome was the number of daily referrals received by the DVA service provider across each borough over 48 months (March 2013-April 2017) in borough B and 42 months (October 2013-April 2017) in borough C. The data were analysed using interrupted-time series, non-linear regression with sensitivity analyses exploring different regression models. Incidence Rate Ratio (IRR), 95% confidence intervals and p-values associated with the disruption were reported for each borough.

Results: A mixed-effects negative binomial regression was the best fit model to the data. In borough B, the disruption, lasted for about six months, reducing the referral rate significantly (p = 0.006) by about 70% (95%CI = (23,87%)). In borough C, the three-month service disruption, also significantly (p = 0.005), reduced the referral rate by about 49% (95% CI = (18,68%)).

Conclusions: Disrupting the IRIS service substantially reduced the rate of referrals to DVA service providers. Our findings are evidence in favour of continuous funding and staffing of IRIS as a system level programme.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1186/s12913-020-05397-xDOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7309975PMC
June 2020

Health practitioners' readiness to address domestic violence and abuse: A qualitative meta-synthesis.

PLoS One 2020 16;15(6):e0234067. Epub 2020 Jun 16.

Judith Lumley Centre, La Trobe University, Bundoora, Victoria, Australia.

Health practitioners play an important role in identifying and responding to domestic violence and abuse (DVA). Despite a large amount of evidence about barriers and facilitators influencing health practitioners' care of survivors of DVA, evidence about their readiness to address DVA has not been synthesised. This article reports a meta-synthesis of qualitative studies exploring the research question: What do health practitioners perceive enhances their readiness to address domestic violence and abuse? Multiple data bases were searched in June 2018. Inclusion criteria included: qualitative design; population of health practitioners in clinical settings; and a focus on intimate partner violence. Two reviewers independently screened articles and findings from included papers were synthesised according to the method of thematic synthesis. Forty-seven articles were included in the final sample, spanning 41 individual studies, four systematic reviews and two theses between the years of 1992 and 2018; mostly from high income countries. Five themes were identified as enhancing readiness of health practitioners to address DVA: Having a commitment; Adopting an advocacy approach; Trusting the relationship; Collaborating with a team; and Being supported by the health system. We then propose a health practitioners' readiness framework called the CATCH Model (Commitment, Advocacy, Trust, Collaboration, Health system support). Applying this model to health practitioners' different readiness for change (using Stage of Change framework) allows us to tailor facilitating strategies in the health setting to enable greater readiness to deal with intimate partner abuse.
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http://journals.plos.org/plosone/article?id=10.1371/journal.pone.0234067PLOS
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7297351PMC
August 2020

Peer-led groups for survivors of sexual abuse and assault: a systematic review.

J Ment Health 2020 Jun 12:1-13. Epub 2020 Jun 12.

Collaboration for Academic Primary Care (APEx), University of Exeter, Exeter, UK.

There are current concerns about whether appropriate support is provided for sexual abuse and assault survivors. We reviewed the published evidence for peer-led groups in the care of survivors. To determine the health and wellbeing outcomes of peer-led, group-based interventions for adult survivors who have experienced sexual abuse and assault and describe the experiences of participants attending these groups. Systematic review. The following databases were searched: Medline, PsycINFO, Embase, Cochrane Library, Web of Science, Sociological Abstracts, IBSS. Papers focusing on adults using any research methodology were included. Quality appraisal was completed using the Mixed Methods Appraisal Tool (MMAT). Thematic analysis was undertaken using methods of constant comparison. Initial, and updated searches identified 16,724 potentially eligible articles. Of these, eight were included. Thematic analysis revealed that peer-led group-based interventions have positive impact on participants' psychological, physical and interpersonal well-being. Participation also presents challenges for survivors. However, there is a mutuality and interconnected benefit between the triggering of difficult emotions due to participation and the healing experiences gained. Scientific evidence of peer-led, group-based, approaches for adult survivors of sexual abuse and assault is limited, although generally suggestive of benefits to such individuals.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/09638237.2020.1770206DOI Listing
June 2020

A study protocol to assess the feasibility of conducting an evaluation trial of the ADVANCE integrated intervention to address both substance use and intimate partner abuse perpetration to men in substance use treatment.

Pilot Feasibility Stud 2020 11;6:62. Epub 2020 May 11.

9School of Health in Social Science, University of Edinburgh, 8-9 Hope Park Square, Edinburgh, 8HQ 9NW UK.

Background: Strong evidence exists that substance use is a contributory risk factor for intimate partner abuse (IPA) perpetration. Men in substance use treatment are more likely to perpetrate IPA than men from the general population. Despite this, referral pathways are lacking for this group. This trial will assess the feasibility of conducting an evaluation trial of a tailored integrated intervention to address substance use and IPA perpetration to men in substance use treatment.

Methods/design: ADVANCE is a multicentre, parallel-group individually randomised controlled feasibility trial, with a nested formative evaluation, comparing an integrated intervention to reduce IPA + substance use treatment as usual (TAU) to TAU only. One hundred and eight men who have perpetrated IPA in the past 12 months from community substance use treatment in London, the West Midlands, and the South West will be recruited. ADVANCE is a manualised intervention comprising 2-4 individual sessions (2 compulsory) with a keyworker to set goals, develop a personal safety plan and increase motivation and readiness, followed by a 12-session weekly group intervention delivered in substance use services. Men will be randomly allocated (ratio 1:1) to receive the ADVANCE intervention + TAU or TAU only. Men's female (ex) partners will be invited to provide outcome data and offered support from integrated safety services (ISS). Regular case management meetings between substance use and ISS will manage risk. Outcome measures will be obtained at the end of the intervention (approximately 4 months post-randomisation) for all male and female participants. The main objective of this feasibility trial is to estimate parameters required for planning a definitive trial including rates of consent, recruitment, and follow-up by site and group allocation. Nested formative evaluation including focus groups and in-depth interviews will explore the intervention's acceptability to participants, group facilitators, keyworkers and ISS workers. Secondary outcomes include substance use, IPA, mental health, self-management, health and social care service use, criminal justice contacts, and quality of life.

Discussion: Findings from this feasibility trial will inform the design of a multicentre randomised controlled trial evaluating the efficacy and cost-effectiveness of the ADVANCE intervention for reducing IPA and improving the well-being of female (ex)partners.

Trial Registration: ISRCTN79435190.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1186/s40814-020-00580-7DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7212681PMC
May 2020

The coMforT study of a trauma-informed mindfulness intervention for women who have experienced domestic violence and abuse: a protocol for an intervention refinement and individually randomized parallel feasibility trial.

Pilot Feasibility Stud 2020 28;6:33. Epub 2020 Feb 28.

1Centre for Academic Primary Care, Bristol Medical School (Population Health Sciences), University of Bristol, Canynge Hall, 39 Whatley Road, Bristol, BS8 2PS UK.

Background: Domestic violence and abuse (DVA) is common and destructive to health. Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) is a major mental health consequence of DVA. People who have experienced DVA have specific needs, arising from the repeated and complex nature of the trauma. The National Institute for Health and Care Excellence recommends more research on the effectiveness of psychological interventions for people who have experienced DVA. There is growing evidence that mindfulness-based interventions may help trauma symptoms.

Methods: Intervention refinement and randomized controlled feasibility trial. A prototype trauma-informed mindfulness-based cognitive therapy (TI-MBCT) intervention will be co-produced following qualitative interviews and consensus exercise with stakeholders. Participants in the feasibility trial will be recruited from DVA agencies in two geographical regions and randomized to receive either TI-MBCT or usual care (self-referral to the Improving Access to Psychological Therapies (IAPT) service). TI-MBCT will be delivered as a group-based eight-week program. It will not be possible to blind the participants or the assessors to the study allocation. The following factors will inform the feasibility of progressing to a fully powered trial: recruitment, retention, intervention fidelity, and the acceptability of the intervention and trial design to participants. We will also test the feasibility of measuring the following participant outcomes before and 6 months post-randomization: PTSD, dissociative symptoms, depression, anxiety, DVA re-victimization, self-compassion, and mother-reported child health. Process evaluation and economic analysis will be embedded within the feasibility trial.

Discussion: This study will lead to the development of a TI-MBCT intervention for DVA survivors with PTSD and inform the feasibility and design of a fully powered randomized controlled trial (RCT). The full trial will aim to determine the effectiveness and cost-effectiveness of a TI-MBCT intervention in improving the clinically important symptoms of PTSD in DVA survivors.

Trial Registration: ISRCTN, ISRCTN64458065, Registered 11 January 2019.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1186/s40814-019-0527-1DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7048140PMC
February 2020

Improving the healthcare response to domestic violence and abuse in UK primary care: interrupted time series evaluation of a system-level training and support programme.

BMC Med 2020 03 5;18(1):48. Epub 2020 Mar 5.

Institute of Population Health Sciences, Queen Mary University of London, London, UK.

Background: It is unknown whether interventions known to improve the healthcare response to domestic violence and abuse (DVA)-a global health concern-are effective outside of a trial.

Methods: An observational interrupted time series study in general practice. All registered women aged 16 and above were eligible for inclusion. In four implementation boroughs' general practices, there was face-to-face, practice-based, clinically relevant DVA training, a prompt in the electronic medical record, reminding clinicians to consider DVA, a simple referral pathway to a named advocate, ensuring direct access for women to specialist services, overseen by a national, health-focused DVA organisation, fostering best practice. The fifth comparator borough had only a session delivered by a local DVA specialist agency at community venues conveying information to clinicians. The primary outcome was the daily number of referrals received by DVA workers per 1000 women registered in a general practice, from 205 general practices, in all five northeast London boroughs. The secondary outcome was recorded new DVA cases in the electronic medical record in two boroughs. Data was analysed using an interrupted time series with a mixed effects Poisson regression model.

Results: In the 144 general practices in the four implementation boroughs, there was a significant increase in referrals received by DVA workers-global incidence rate ratio of 30.24 (95% CI 20.55 to 44.77, p < 0.001). There was no increase in the 61 general practices in the other comparator borough (incidence rate ratio of 0.95, 95% CI 0.13 to 6.84, p = 0.959). New DVA cases recorded significantly increased with an incident rate ratio of 1.27 (95% CI 1.09 to 1.48, p < 0.002) in the implementation borough but not in the comparator borough (incidence rate ratio of 1.05, 95% CI 0.82 to 1.34, p = 0.699).

Conclusions: Implementing integrated referral routes, training and system-level support, guided by a national health-focused DVA organisation, outside of a trial setting, was effective and sustainable at scale, over four years (2012 to 2017) increasing referrals to DVA workers and new DVA cases recorded in electronic medical records.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1186/s12916-020-1506-3DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7057596PMC
March 2020

"From taboo to routine": a qualitative evaluation of a hospital-based advocacy intervention for domestic violence and abuse.

BMC Health Serv Res 2020 Feb 21;20(1):129. Epub 2020 Feb 21.

Domestic Violence/Abuse and Health Research Group (DVAHG), Centre for Academic Primary Care, Bristol Medical School, University of Bristol, Canynge Hall, 39 Whatley Road, Bristol, BS8 2PS, UK.

Background: Health services are often the first point of professional contact for people who have experienced domestic violence and abuse. We report on the evaluation of a multi-site, hospital-based advocacy intervention for survivors of domestic violence and abuse. Independent Domestic Violence Advisors (IDVAs), who provide survivors with support around safety, criminal justice, and health and wellbeing, were located in five hospitals in England between 2012 and 2015 in emergency departments and maternity services. We present views about IDVAs' approaches to tackling domestic violence and abuse, how the IDVA service worked in practice, and factors that hindered and facilitated engagement with survivors.

Methods: We adopted a convenience sampling approach and invited participation from all who offered to take part within the study timeframe. Sixty-four healthcare professionals, IDVAs, IDVA service managers, and commissioners at all sites were interviewed. Interviews were analysed using a thematic approach: familiarising ourselves with the data through repeated readings and noting initial ideas; generating initial codes through double coding notable features of the data across the dataset; collating codes into potential themes; and reviewing themes to ensure they captured the essence of the data.

Results: Two key themes emerged. The first was Hospital-based IDVAs fulfil several crucial roles. This theme highlighted that healthcare professionals thought the hospital-based IDVA service was valuable because it enhanced their skills, knowledge, and confidence in asking about domestic violence and abuse. It enabled them to immediately refer and provide support to patients who might have otherwise been lost along a referral pathway. It also reached survivors who might otherwise have remained hidden. The second theme was Success hinges on a range of structural factors. This theme illustrated the importance of ongoing domestic violence and abuse training for staff, the IDVA having private and dedicated space, and the service being embedded in hospital infrastructure (e.g. featuring it in hospital-wide policies and enabling IDVAs access to medical records).

Conclusion: Hospital-based IDVAs offer a unique and valued way to respond to domestic violence and abuse in a healthcare setting. Further work must now be done to explore how to implement the service sustainably.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1186/s12913-020-4924-1DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7035753PMC
February 2020
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