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Healthy People 2020 identified intimate partner violence (IPV) as an increasing public health issue. Previously thought of as a private matter, IVP has received little attention by the health care sector. IPV affects millions, both men and women; it crosses racial, ethnic, religious, economic, and educational groups. The financial effects of IPV are estimated at $ 5.8 billion annually in the U.S. alone. The incidence of IPV is a growing public health issue and to raise awareness and education is a goal of the Healthy People 2020 initiatives (Center for Disease Control and Prevention, 2020). This objective may be attainable by the increased number of physician offices, medical clinics, emergency room waiting areas, and health department clinics distributing the printed educational information (pamphlets, brochures, and posters), as well as the information distributed by in-office educational television. The goal is increasing collaboration with distribution and posting of printed materials in the waiting areas and strategic places in medical facilities. Evaluation of the increased awareness of the medical community will be based on the number of agreements, of the offices, to distribute educational material and information. Short term goals will be to raise awareness and dissemination of information and knowledge pertaining to IPV. Long term goals will be to continue the increase of information to inter-office television information and broadcasting for intimate partner violence, and future classes through the health department and schools for IPV prevention and interventions.
Articles reviewed from the CDC, American Association of College of Nurses, Crisis Prevention Centers, ENA, and American Family Physician agree that to inform and educate medical staff and patients about intimate partner violence, will help increase the community awareness of intimate partner violence. Key concepts include: healthcare professionals, domestic violence, interventions, education, and awareness.
The Information-Motivation-Behavior-Skills Model (IMB) will be utilized to develop the plan for intimate partner violence prevention. The IMB model provides a platform to design interventions, to help instigate change in the pattern of behavior, and to develop prevention measures. This includes three concepts:
1) Information: targeting the concepts that are used make behavioral changes and ways to achieve changes. Information generates knowledge, which shapes attitudes, which leads to behaviors (Mehta, 2010).
2) Motivation: deals with personal attitudes toward positive health behavior and uses existing social support systems to enhance motivation. Motivation is of two types: personal motivation, which is based on personal attitudes toward behaviors, and social motivation are to engage in prevention based on social responsibilities (Mehta, 2010)
3) Behavior: actions that allow the learning of skills required to make a change. Behavioral skills are the individual’s ability and self-efficiency to performing the action required to make the behavioral change (Mehta, 2010).
This framework is appropriate for the intended project as it includes the three elements needed to achieve practice and policy changes in most healthcare settings. Information targeting intimate partner violence, being displayed in medical facilities, will assist in making the employees of the facility, as well as the patients more aware. Motivation, even for well-informed individuals, is to undertake health promotion action and support the efforts toward awareness. Behavioral is based on if the individuals that have the knowledge and motivation, and have the required self-efficacy in carrying out a health promotion behavior plan (Mehta, 2010).
Interventions are designed and implemented based on the health behavior. Presenting the information to make changes is the first step to any behavior change. The evaluation or outcome is conducted to assess the impact of the intervention to produce the desired effect.
This model focuses on the individual by providing information and intervention on how to change the personal attitudes and behaviors, and the environmental by showing how health promotion may be affected by individual and social support systems (Gielen, 2003).
Placing awareness information or education in medical facilities, in strategic spots, such as bathrooms, examine rooms, and waiting areas, will allow the patients the opportunity to read and take the pamphlets, brochures, or resource cards with them when leaving the premises (McClure, 1996). It also lets the patients know that the staff is supportive and understand the importance of interventions and support for those that need assistance, or just want to discuss the issue (B.J.Walton-Moss & J.C.Campbell, 2002). Knowledgeable and supportive medical personnel may be able to refer the patient to the appropriate community resource or program. By displaying information openly, or discreetly, improves the chance of prevention and behavioral changes (Center for Disease Control and Prevention, 2013).
The plan for increasing the awareness of medical facilities and clinics will include discussions with physicians, nurses, advanced nurse practitioners, and all other medical care providers that provide care and assist in decisions related to patient education and information displayed in the offices, clinics, or clinical settings. The planned direction of the discussions will be on the increased awareness, and agree to place educational material related to intimate partner violence, available community resources, resource cards, and hotline numbers for help. The addition of inter-office television information related to IPV will be discussed, and information on obtaining this programming will be furnished (National Coalition Against Domestic Violence, 2013). Information pertaining to patient screening and staff training related to continued education credits for the medical staff will be furnished (CEU.Fast.com, 2014). There are many governmental agencies that have the instructional materials, screening programs, and programs for staff development available at nominal costs, as well as programs that are free for many medical facilities that agree to participate in clinical prevention (VAWnet).
When increasing the awareness of medical providers and their staff, on the public health issue of intimate partner violence, the added benefits of education and awareness of the public obtained through the medical office, may increase the community awareness and practice and attitudes toward IPV (Future Without Violence). The increased awareness may help in decreasing the incidence of IPV and the significant health issues related to IPV (Power).
As it is the responsibility of all medical professionals to improve the health of their communities and the people of the community, it is the responsibility of the APN to be involved in community education and awareness of fellow medical professionals, on the complications and long term medical issues resulting from IPV, measures to prevent IPV, and educational measures that may be implemented for the prevention and assessment of this public health issue (Rhodes & & Levinson, 2003).
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