Mental health conditions and utilisation of mental health services by survivors of physical intimate partner violence in Portugal: Results from the WHO world mental health survey

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Abstract

The aim of this article is to study mental health conditions among survivors of severe physical intimate partner violence (IPV) and their utilisation of mental health services. This study is an integrated part of the World Mental Health Survey Initiative-Portugal, for which data was collected from a nationally representative adult sample using well-validated scales. Logistic regression models were used in the analysis. The most common statistically significant mental health conditions among IPV survivors were suicide ideation, PTSD, major depressive episode, and generalised anxiety disorder. More than one in three survivors developed PTSD. Suicide ideation was likely to occur after first experiencing IPV. Almost a half of survivors received specialised mental health treatment; in most cases, delivered by a psychiatrist. Over 60 % addressed their mental health issues consulting general physicians or other healthcare professionals. Those who experienced family violence in childhood had greater odds of also experiencing IPV; survivors of IPV with this experience were more likely to receive mental health treatment. The need to promote greater awareness and competencies of not only mental health professionals but also of general physicians and other healthcare professionals to provide support more effectively to survivors of any type of IPV deserves to be emphasised.

Original languageEnglish
Article number115801
JournalPsychiatry Research
Volume334
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Apr 2024

Keywords

  • Childhood adversities
  • Domestic abuse
  • Gender-based violence
  • Healthcare professionals
  • Mental disorders
  • Psychiatrist treatment
  • Public health

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