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Increased intimate partner violence in users of Mexican public health services: fact or improved registry?
  1. L Avila1,
  2. A Barroso1,
  3. R Valdez1,
  4. M Hijar2,
  5. A Del Rio3,
  6. R Rojas2
  1. 1Instituto Nacional de Salud Päblica (INSP). Centro de Investigaciän en Sistemas Cuernavaca, Morelos, Mexico; 2INSP. Centro de Investigaciän en Salud Poblacional, Cuernavaca, Morelos, Mesico; 3Secretaria de Salud. Centro Nacionale de Equidad de Gänero y Salud Reproductiva,Ciudad de Mexico, Mexico


Objective To explore the prevalence trends in intimate partner violence (IPV) for the years 2003 and 2006 in Mexico, identifying factors associated with the severity of violence.

Method The 2006 National Survey on Violence toward Women (ENVIM 2006) was used. This survey is nationally, urban and rural representative of public health service users. 22 318 women above the age of 14 were interviewed. A restricted generalised ordinal regression model was adjusted. The dependant variable was the severity of the IPV index. The same items were used in both surveys (ENVIM 2003 and ENVIM 2006).

Results Non-severe and severe violence were experienced by 21% and 12% of respondents, respectively. A history of child abuse (ORA 3.89) and rape (ORA 2.09, 95% CI 1.65 to 2.66) was the most important factor linked to severe violence. A male partner's near daily alcohol consumption increased up to six times the possibility of severe abuse. A female partner's acceptance of the traditional role increased the risk for violence, while higher education in both partners diminished it.

Conclusions IPV in female users of public health services increased to 21% by the year 2006 in comparison 2003. Associated factors were consistent in both surveys. This social problem, with such a high prevalence, requires inter-institutional strategies supporting greater empowerment of women through higher education, early detection, health care, and specific interventions for the prevention of IPV in future generations.

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