A site for Missouri healthcare providers & friends who care about domestic violence & health

New Tri-Fold Pocket Resource for Healthcare Providers

Click the link to access: HCP brochure- Resources

Prints out 8X11 and then tri-folds.  Helpful resources for patients and healthcare providers, Danger Assessment, steps to screening for intimate partner violence, responding, and documenting, & emergency safety plan.  Download, duplicate, distribute any way you like…. we are way cool with that!


All Healthcare Providers & Students Should Join the Missouri Coalition Against Domestic & Sexual Violence

In case you can’t tell, we here at MissouriHCADV are big fans of the Missouri Coalition Against Domestic & Sexual Violence. They describe themselves best:  “MCADSV is a statewide membership coalition of organizations and individuals working to end violence against women and their children through direct services and social and systemic change.”  They do great work all across the state of Missouri.  We highly, highly recommend that healthcare providers and students become members of MCADSV.  Why?

  • it’s dirt cheap — $45 for providers, $25 for students– AND potentially tax-deductible as a professional expense if you itemize
  • you can put it down on your resume as an organization you belong to (great for students who plan on a career in women’s health, in particular)
  • you are stepping up to the plate to show that you support the work that they do
  • you get access to incredible resources which will help YOU in your work– FREE trainings, technical assistance, publications, and manuals; discounted conference registration (they have a fantastic annual conference); regular updates on local & national legislation relevant to violence against women.

To join up, visit here: http://www.mocadsv.org/Become%20a%20Member.aspx

To check out their website & online calendar! www.mocadsv.org

You don’t have to join MCADSV to access their excellent trainings… you can just pay for the trainings as a non-member.  But since the cost of one training = the cost of annual membership, it’s really much more cost-effective to join, because then you access the trainings for free… Along with all the aforementioned benefits.  Here’s a good training coming up:

Register for MCADSV The Basics of Advocacy Fall Course. MCADSV is now offering the basics of domestic violence advocacy in six days of training. You can register for as many or as few dates as you wish.  Each training date requires a separate registration. Trainings are offered in pairs of back-to-back days to reduce travel for those attending multiple trainings. This expanded training allows time for in-depth discussion and processing. We hope that attendees who participate in the entire course will build upon prior skills and development with each new section.

Training is held from 9:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m. Registration begins at 8:30 a.m. You may register online at www.mocadsv.org/membership at least a week prior to the training. Space is limited to 40. Breakfast and lunch are provided. The workshop is held at the MCADSV Training Center in Jefferson City. There is ample parking. Please see the attached brochure for more information.

  •  The Nature and Dynamics of Domestic Violence , July 25: Trainer: Laura Zahnd
  • The Nature and Dynamics of Sexual Violence, July 26: Trainer: Jennifer Carter
  • Core Services: Hotline, Crisis Intervention and Safety Planning, September 26: Trainers: Jennifer Carter and Gail Reynoso
  • Prevention as Social Change, September 27: Trainers: Matthew Huffman and Marie Montano
  • Cultural Considerations and Program Accessibility, October 24: Trainers: Angela Lucero and Marie Montano
  • Core Services: Legal and Medical Advocacy,October 25:Trainers: Kelly Martinez and Gail Reynoso

CEUs or contact hours from The University of Missouri are approved for each individual training as well as the entire course.  Attendees will only need to pay the $10 CEU/contact hour fee one time to receive credit for the entire course or any combination of training days!

If you have any questions, please contact MCADSV at (888) 666-1911.

Graduate Certificate in Interpersonal Violence and Health Care

Hmmm…. Interesting!!!  Now accepting applications:  A UC Denver School of Public Affairs program where you can earn a Certificate in Interpersonal Violence and Health Care (CIVHC for short.)  It’s a stand-alone graduate-level certificate– looks like it’s 5 classes and a practicum– which can be taken for academic credit or for continuing education credits.  From their website (http://www.ucdenver.edu/academics/colleges/SPA/BuechnerInstitute/Centers/CenteronDomesticViolence/DegreesandCertificates/CIVHC/Pages/InterpersonalViolenceHealthCare.aspx) :

“The CIVHC program is designed for health care professionals, students of the health sciences and those who want to further their education and training to become health advocates for victims of domestic violence. Conveniently structured for distance learners, the majority of course work is administered through brief intensive periods of study in Denver. This makes the completing the program feasible for a wide audience.”

How do you like that??!  Sounds pretty cool.  There’s also a certificate for domestic violence studies which is not specifically focused on health & health care.

The Science Base for Prevention of Injury and Violence– Free CE/CME Units Online

Injury and violence prevention– including prevention of the consequences of domestic violence — is a key public health goal with a strong foundation of scientific evidence to back it up.  If you’d like to learn more about this, and what the CDC is doing about it, consider this Public Health Grand Rounds offering from the National Center on Injury and Prevention Control.

  • Free to attend
  • Webinars rule… You can do this in your jammies. You don’t even have to brush your teeth!
  • Free CE or CME Units for healthcare providers provided
  • You can attend it live– January 17th, 2012 at 12 pm — or view the archived webcast anytime.

Target audience: Physicians, nurses, epidemiologists, pharmacists, veterinarians, certified health education specialists, laboratorians, others


  1. List key measures of burden of disease involving morbidity, mortality, and/or cost.
  2. Describe evidence-based preventive interventions and the status of their implementations.
  3. Identify one key prevention science research gap.
  4. Name one key indicator by which progress and meeting prevention goals is measured.

Good stuff, y’all!!! 

Link to presentation: http://www.cdc.gov/about/grand-rounds/archives/2012/January2012.htm

Continuing Education Hours:

Register for free CE/CME credits: http://www2a.cdc.gov/TCEOnline

  • The course code  is PHGR10.
  • After February 17, 2012,  the course number will change to WD1640
  • The course will be available for continuing education until January 17, 2014.

ALL Continuing Education hours are issued online through the CDC/ATSDR Training & Continuing Education Online system, http://www2a.cdc.gov/TCEOnline. If you have questions, call Learner Support at 1-800-418-7246 (1-800-41TRAIN), or ce@cdc.gov.

Why Don’t Healthcare Providers Ask About Violence?

“A nurse would look at me and know…What about the burn on my hand? The missing hair? The teeth? I waited to be asked. Ask me. Ask me. Ask me. I’d tell her. I’d tell them everything. Look at the burn. Ask me about it. Ask.”   from The Woman Who Walked Into Doors, Roddy Doyle

A major barrier that prevents healthcare providers from talking to their patients about intimate partner violence is that most of us have received little to no training on how to do so.  Accordingly, our comfort level with talking about violence is often low.  Providers will often say things like:

  • “I don’t know what to say… or where to start.” (You can learn how. Other providers do it– you can too.)
  • “I don’t know how to help.” (You can learn how to do this too. You’re smart, and it isn’t rocket science.)
  • “There’s nothing anyone can really do anyways– abused women just go back, over and over.  It’s a waste of time.” (A large body of evidence shows that this is not true.  Most abused women DO eventually leave, if the abuse doesn’t stop.  However, the barriers to her leaving safely are often enormous — this is where YOU really make a difference by offering non-judgmental support– on her timetable, not yours– and helping her know what kind of help is out there.)
  • “I’m going to offend her if I ask.” (Research also shows this is not true.  The vast majority of women– abused or not– are NOT offended by questions about violence.  Instead, women often appreciate that providers care enough to ask.  This is particularly true when providers convey that they ask the questions routinely, because violence is so common, and when they convey empathy and aren’t judgmental.  If she’s abused, she may not feel safe telling anyone just yet– but you are opening a door.)
  • “It’s going to take forever– it’s like opening a can of worms.” (Any complication or problem that comes up can add time to a visit– it’s true.  But when you know what your resources are and how to connect women to them, this is less so.  Anyways– is this  a reason NOT to do the right thing?)

We can learn how to help abused women–and should.  It’s the right thing to do. 

The truth is that healthcare provider education– for nurses, physicians, and others– doesn’t address everything we need to know in clinical practice.   Because violence is so common in women’s lives and causes so many health problems, our lack of education about dealing with intimate partner violence IS a problem. We need to change healthcare provider education for the better.  

Meanwhile, it’s up to us to learn what we need to know– to educate ourselves, and our colleagues.  It’s up to us to to seek education and training for ourselves, connect with the experts in our communities (domestic violence advocates and others who work with survivors of violence), to effect change in our workplaces– and to stand up for abused women and their children. 

What will you do this year about intimate partner violence?

Sadie’s Story

Sadie (not her real name) was a mother of two in her late 20’s.  She experienced severe violence from her husband,  who isolated her from friends and family, and beat, choked, and raped her.  She had been divorced for two years, when she met with a researcher to tell her story.

Sadie wanted to escape after she became pregnant with her first child.  “[I] called my mom up two months pregnant, said ‘I want to go home.’ He said, ‘you’re not going home’… And I didn’t have, I didn’t have anybody… [I was] super isolated… was abused every single day.”

Like many survivors, Sadie was afraid to talk about the violence.  She visited the hospital “two or three times with my daughter because my, her dad beat me, my husband at the time. Beat me and sent me to the hospital, with preterm labor.” She added, “And we’d make up this story, where I fell down the stairs and it just started happening. But there’d be physical bruises on me. And they’d see him drunk.”

Sadie said, “I think people did try to talk to me [about violence]. Like nurses.”  However, she said the nurses seemed uncaring or uncomfortable … and she was always asked about violence when her husband was still in the room.  Only the last time, however, did she encounter a nurse who was different:

“And she was the only nurse that actually took my husband out of the room and said, ‘I need to talk to her.’ All the other ones talked to me in front of him.”

Sadie did not tell the nurse what was happening.  “I swore up and down he didn’t hit me. Swore up and down.” However, the caring that the nurse conveyed made an impression on her:

“I believe that the nurse that talked to me had a lot of empathy. And some of the other nurses didn’t. And I didn’t listen to the ones that didn’t. It’s that little seed, you know, that people drop in, into your soul. And it just keeps on building, and it grows a tree eventually.”

Sadie never told anyone about the violence during her first pregnancy.  However, during her second pregnancy, she found a doctor she trusted– who became the first person she told.  Sadie believed her doctors’ support was key to getting through this difficult time in her life, which included not only leaving her abusive husband but medical complications such as a gallbladder surgery. The word she used to describe their relationship was also one of “empathy”:

“She was, she knew my history—She knew my history, she knew my history with his dad, um, she was just very supportive. I mean, whatever decision I wanted…  And from the moment I met her, to even now, she, um, you know. She respects me.”

Sadie described her repeated visits to the hospital in her first pregnancy as a “cry for help” that it seemed like most providers did not want to hear.  “It was—it was almost like I wanted, I stayed in the relationship, and I wanted to go into the hospital. Not because I had something to hide, but because I wanted some help.”  Years later, she believed that the nurse who screened her for abuse and conveyed such empathy had planted a seed that later convinced her— when she encountered another provider who conveyed empathy– that providers do care and do want to help.

Domestic violence is about power and control.  Emotional abuse and isolation are very common tactics used by abusers to control their partners. Abusers work hard to convince their partners that the violence is their fault and that no one cares.  Although domestic violence is a common issue with tremendous implications for health, the healthcare system often inadvertently sends the same message… that we don’t care about domestic violence.  Healthcare providers are often not well-trained about domestic violence and may avoid asking questions about it.

Sadie’s story conveys just how important a caring provider can be… and how sometimes we don’t even know the impact that we have on a vulnerable patient.  Have you seen a patient you thought was abused, but you didn’t know how to ask?  Have you felt frustrated and unsure how to help when a patient denied abuse?  Have you been asked about violence as a patient?

Welcome to Missouri Health Cares About Domestic Violence!

Who is Missouri HCADV?

  • Healthcare providers and professionals
  • Domestic violence advocates
  • Researchers
  • Students
  • Survivors of violence
  • And anyone else who is interested in raising awareness about domestic violence in healthcare settings and using the incredible potential of healthcare providers to plant the seed— To connect with violence survivors, help them find safety, and help them to heal.

What is Missouri HCADV for?

  • To share evidence-based information on domestic violence and its impact on health
  • To share information on local, regional, and national training/continuing education opportunities about domestic violence for providers, advocates, and students
  • To increase our individual capacity (and that of our organizations) to address domestic violence and help survivors
  • To network with other people in our state and learn from each other.

Missouri HCADV is grass-roots and all-volunteer.

What you can do right away:

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