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Crasta D, Crane CA, Trabold N, Shepardson RL, Possemato K, Funderburk JS. Relationship Health and Intimate Partner Violence in Integrated Primary Care: Individual Characteristics and Preferences for Relationship Support across Risk Levels. International journal of environmental research and public health. 2022 Oct 27; 19(21).
This study explores differences in characteristics and relationship treatment preferences across different levels of intimate partner violence (IPV) among Veterans Affairs (VA) primary care patients. In Fall 2019, we sent a mail-in survey assessing relationship healthcare needs to N = 299 Veterans randomly sampled from 20 northeastern VA primary care clinics (oversampling female and younger Veterans). We compared those reporting past year use or experience of physical/sexual aggression, threats/coercion, or injury (Severe IPV; 21%), to those only reporting yelling and screaming (Verbal Conflict; 51%), and denying any IPV (No IPV; 28%). Participants across groups desired 2-6 sessions of face-to-face support for couples' health and communication. No IPV participants were older and had preferred treatment in primary care. The Verbal Conflict and Severe IPV groups were both flagged by IPV screens and had similar interest in couple treatment and relationship evaluation. The Severe IPV group had higher rates of harms (e.g., depression, alcohol use disorder, relationship dissatisfaction, fear of partner) and higher interest in addressing safety outside of VA. Exploratory analyses suggested differences based on use vs. experience of Severe IPV. Findings highlight ways integrated primary care teams can differentiate services to address dissatisfaction and conflict while facilitating referrals for Severe IPV.