Screening, management, and treatment of intimate partner violence among women in low-resource settings

Laura M. Schwab-Reese, Lynette M. Renner

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

2 Scopus citations


The prevention of intimate partner violence continues to be a high priority for health practitioners and researchers around the world. Screening practices and intervention efforts utilized within high- and/or middle-income areas may not translate effectively to low-resource areas due to differences in financial, social, and physical context. However, little is known about the evidence-base of intervention efforts in such areas. Using the Arksey and O’Malley framework for scoping reviews, the purpose of this review was to synthesize what is known about intimate partner violence screening, management, and treatment in low-resource areas. A total of 31 programs reported across 34 articles were included in this scoping review. The programs incorporated a range of intervention activities, including group-based education and skill-development combined with microfinance to screening and referral to community resources. Slightly less than half of the studies (n = 14) were randomized controlled trials or clustered randomized controlled trials. Many barriers were common across the programs, including limited financial support, lack of community support, and lack of coordination across programs. Despite considerable barriers related to the limited available resources, the literature base had many strengths, such as strong evaluation methodologies, inclusion of a theoretical or conceptual framework to guide the intervention, and community engagement before and during the intervention implementation. However, insufficient statistical power and barriers related to cultural differences or inadequate cultural sensitivity were also common. With a variety of barriers to program implementation noted within the articles, it is important for researchers and practitioners to consider the geographic, social, cultural, and economic contexts when implementing intimate partner violence programs in low-resource areas. Given the significant differences in context across low-resource areas, additional research to establish effective protocols for tailoring and implementing evidence-based programs using a community-engaged framework would be beneficial to future research and practice.

Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalWomen's Health
StatePublished - 2018


  • interventions
  • intimate partner violence
  • low-resource areas
  • scoping review
  • screening


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