Improving care for women with disability affected by violence

Posted 14 Feb 2022

Women with disability who have suffered violence are the focus of Flinders research aiming to improve healthcare responses.

Dr Amy Marshall’s project, which has received a Flinders Foundation Health Seed Grant, will map the journeys of women with disability through the South Australian healthcare system, after they have experienced domestic and/or sexual violence.

This will create a deeper understanding of the barriers, enablers and complexities these women face.

“Despite the high rates of violence and abuse women with disability experience, research about effective and person-centred response is lacking,” Dr Marshall said.

“These maps will be constructed by working in-depth with women with disability about their experiences and prioritising their perspectives.

“By identifying barriers and facilitators from their perspectives, action can be taken that improves the ways that healthcare systems identify and respond to their needs and priorities based on evidence rather than assumption. This would result in better quality of care and more appropriate referral pathways, improving current violence prevention efforts.”

Dr Marshall said more appropriate healthcare responses for women with disability could help prevent violence recurrence and better address related health issues for women with disability.

“This could also increase knowledge and confidence among clinicians about both disability and violence against women, and the way these issues intersect to affect women, and ultimately better meet the needs of these women.”

Research category: Public Health

Project title: Person-centred healthcare responses for women with disability affected by violence 

Lead researcher: Dr Amy Marshall 


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