Did you know that October is Domestic Violence Awareness month?
According to Family Shelter Service in DuPage County:
Clearly, healthcare providers are in a unique position to identify potential victims of domestic violence.
Domestic violence can include emotional and/or physical abuse, so some (but not all) patients experiencing domestic violence have physical injuries. Patients may also present with a variety of stress-related issues, such as insomnia, headache, depression, anxiety and panic attacks, stomach upset, chronic pain in the chest, abdomen or pelvis, and poorer pregnancy outcomes.
Unfortunately, only a small percentage of domestic incidents are reported. Knowing how to solicit information on domestic violence and communicate properly with potential victims is critically important.
Healthcare providers can be a lifeline for victims of domestic violence. But it takes knowledge and commitment. We need to be able to ask the right questions, recognize the warning signs, and provide the right kind of help for patients who need it.
In the coming year, Gina Sharp, President of Linden Oaks Hospital, will be chairing a committee at Edward-Elmhurst Health to improve our core competencies in identifying and reaching victims of domestic violence. This will include the offering of professional training and support groups.
Get support from Linden Oaks Behavioral Health.
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