CONTEXT: Despite multiple calls for clinic-based services to identify and support women victimized by partner violence, screening remains uncommon in family planning clinics. Furthermore, traditional screening, based on disclosure of violence, may miss women who fear reporting their experiences. Strategies that are sensitive to the signs, symptoms and impact of trauma require exploration. METHODS: In 2011, as part of a cluster randomized controlled trial, staff at 11 Pennsylvania family planning clinics were trained to offer a trauma-informed intervention addressing intimate partner violence and reproductive coercion to all women seeking care, regardless of exposure to violence. The intervention sought to educate women about available resources and harm reduction strategies. In 2013, at the conclusion of the trial, 18 providers, five administrators and 49 patients completed semistructured interviews exploring acceptability of the intervention and barriers to implementation. Consensus and open coding strategies were used to analyze the data. RESULTS: Providers reported that the intervention increased their confidence in discussing intimate partner violence and reproductive coercion. They noted that asking patients to share the educational information with other women facilitated the conversation. Barriers to implementation included lack of time and not having routine reminders to offer the intervention. Patients described how receiving the intervention gave them important information, made them feel supported and less isolated, and empowered them to help others. CONCLUSIONS: A universal intervention may be acceptable to providers and patients. However, successful implementation in family planning settings may require attention to system-level factors that providers view as barriers.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Sociology and Political Science
- Obstetrics and Gynecology
- Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health