Abused women’s experiences of a primary care identification and referral intervention: A case study analysis

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Aims: To report the findings of a qualitative case study that investigated abused women’s experiences of an identification and referral intervention and to discuss the implications for nurses, specifically those working in primary and community care.
Background: Domestic violence and abuse is a significant public health issue globally but it is a hidden problem that is under-reported. In the UK, identification and Referral to Improve Safety is a primary care-based intervention that has been found to increase referral rates of abused women to support and safety services. This paper reports on the findings of an evaluation study of two sites in England.
Design: Qualitative study with a case study design.
Methods: In line with case study design the entire evaluation study employed multiple data collection methods. We report on the qualitative interviews with women referred through the programme. The aim was to elicit their experiences of the three aspects of the intervention: identification; referral; safety. Data collection took place in March 2016.
Findings: Findings: Ten women took part. Eight had exited the abusive relationship but two remained with the partner who had perpetrated the abuse. Women were overwhelmingly positive about the programme and irrespective of whether they had remained or exited the relationship all reported perceptions of increased safety and improved health.
Conclusion: Nurses have an important role to play in identifying domestic violence and abuse and in referral and safety planning. Interventions that empower women to take control of their safety (such as Identification and Referral to Improve Safety) are important.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)3189-3199
Number of pages21
JournalJournal of Advanced Nursing
Issue number12
Early online date10 Jan 2017
Publication statusPublished - 17 Feb 2017


  • Abuse,.
  • Case Study
  • Domestic Violence,
  • Identification
  • Intimate Partner Violence
  • Nursing
  • Qualitative
  • Referral
  • Safety

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Health Professions(all)


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