High incidence of nurses facing domestic violence: AIIMS study

There is a high incidence of nurses facing domestic violence from their husbands, even while pregnant, which is reported to be affecting their physical and mental health, according to a study conducted by AIIMS.

The study conducted among married nurses in various departments of the prestigious institute found that 60 per cent of nurses reported that their marital partners perpetrated controlling behaviour, 65 per cent reported emotional violence, 43.30 per cent physical violence and 30 per cent sexual violence.

According to the study, pregnancy does not provide immunity against domestic violence as 45.80 per cent of physically abused victims were kicked or beaten up when pregnant.

Sixty nurses who participated in the study worked in three different shifts in various departments, including the main hospital, private ward (new and main hospital), Bhim Rao Ambedkar Institute Rotary Cancer Hospital and Rajendra Prasad Centre for Ophthalmic Sciences.

Up to 18.86 per cent pregnant nurses were physically abused, 7.50 per cent were kicked in the abdomen during pregnancy and in 30 per cent cases, slapping or beating got worse than before pregnancy.

Thirty-three per cent nurses experiencing domestic violence required medical care, the study revealed.

Over half of the study subjects (56.70 per cent) reported that physical or sexual violence affected their physical and mental health and caused inability to concentrate (56.70 per cent), loss of confidence (26.70 per cent) and inability to work (23.30 per cent).

Half of the respondents reported there was no particular reason for violent behaviour of husbands.

A majority of respondents reported that most violent acts were still continuing.

Far from being isolated acts of violence, incidents occurred many times, the study said.

The study was published in the Indian Journal of Community Medicine and was conducted by Kamlesh Kumari Sharma and Manju Vatsa with the College of Nursing at AIIMS.

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