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The provision of emergency healthcare for women who experience intimate partner violence: Part 1. An integrative review
This integrative review is the first of a two-part series about intimate partner violence (IPV). Part 2 will explore strategies to address barriers to the care of women who experience IPV in the emergency department (ED). IPV has become a major concern globally and specifically in Australia. Healthcare professionals in the ED are often the first point of contact for women experiencing IPV and therefore the provision of a comprehensive healthcare response to these vulnerable patients remains a priority. The review evaluated healthcare professionals' approaches to the care of women who present to the ED with injuries related to IPV. A systematic search of studies was undertaken using four databases. After the selection process, a total of 24 articles was identified. Six themes emerged: IPV care protocols, physical care provision, psychosocial care provision, provision of safety, role of referrals and barriers to appropriate care provision. There is a lack of evidence supporting healthcare approaches in the ED to address IPV. ED healthcare professionals experience numerous barriers that hinder their ability to provide patient-centred care, which suggests that patients presenting with IPV-related concerns may not be receiving adequate or appropriate healthcare in ED settings. © RCN Publishing Company Limited 2019.