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"I Need to Hear From Women Who Have 'Been There'": Developing a Woman-Focused Intervention for Drug Use and Partner Violence in the Emergency Department

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Objective: Addressing violence and linking women to community services in parallel with drug change goals is critical for women with coexisting intimate partner violence (IPV) and substance use disorders (SUD). Our objective was to develop a Web-based intervention to address violence and drug use among women patients in the emergency department (ED). Methods: The intervention was developed in a 5-step process: (1) Initial intervention development based on selected theoretical frameworks; (2) In-depth interviews with the target population; (3) Intervention adaptation, with iterative feedback from further interviews; (4) Beta testing and review by an advisory committee of domestic violence advocates; (5) Acceptability and feasibility testing in a small open trial. Results: Themes supported the selection of motivational interviewing (MI) and empowerment models but also guided major adaptations to the intervention, including the introduction of videos and a more robust booster phone call. Participants in the open trial reported high scores for satisfaction, usability, and consistency with essential elements of MI. Conclusions: This qualitative work with our target population of women in the ED with SUD experiencing IPV underscored the importance of connection to peers and empathetic human contact. We developed an acceptable and feasible intervention distinct from prior ED-based brief interventions for substance-using populations.
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Keywords: DOMESTIC VIOLENCE; EMERGENCY DEPARTMENT; EMERGENCY MEDICINE; INTIMATE PARTNER VIOLENCE; SUBSTANCE USE DISORDERS

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: April 1, 2016

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