Background Partner violence often starts in pregnancy but goes undetected. Aim: The study aimed to explore the perceived needs of primary care providers in addressing the problem effectively. Methods: A questionnaire survey was conducted with 61 PHC providers serving all the rural health care centers of Heraklion Prefecture in Greece including an urban health care centre of Heraklion. The participants were invited to rate their information needs in 57 individual sets of information, falling under 5 thematic areas as follows: a) general information regarding IPV during pregnancy; b) assessment of IPV; c) management/treatment of IPV; d) documentation/recording IPV in patient record; e) follow up patient. Qualitative research was also employed with 4 purposively selected PHC providers (general practitioner, nurse, midwife, social worker) exploring the challenges in the interdisciplinary management of cases. Thematic analysis was used for data analysis.
Results Approximately 1 in every 2 participants identified as ‘highly important’: a) the symptoms of IPV during pregnancy (59.0%), b) the dynamics of IPV during pregnancy (57.4%), c) treatment methods (50.8%), d) follow up practices (50.8%) and e) documentation and recording practices (47.5%). The thematic analysis revealed: (a) lack of screening, (b) ambiguity regarding the professional role, (c) lack of documentation, (d) poorly developed intersectoral collaboration, and (e) poor prevention in the community.
Conclusions Low provider and system preparedness were evident and multiple barriers in interdisciplinary and inter-sectoral collaboration. Learning Outcomes: The current study identified sets of information, which are important to be included in an interdisciplinary practice protocol offered to PHC providers to support their daily practice.
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