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Med Teach. 2007 Jun;29(5):e133-8.

Domestic violence: a national simulation-based educational program to improve physicians' knowledge, skills and detection rates.

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Israel Center for Medical Simulation, Tel Hashamer, Israel.



Although physicians are in a unique position to identify and report domestic violence (DV), detection rates are poor.


To develop a national DV experiential training program, based on standardized patients (SPs), to improve knowledge, skills and detection rates among physicians.


The program was initiated by the Israeli Ministry of Health and took place at the Israel Center of Medical Simulation (MSR). Three one-day workshops for physicians were developed, each focusing on intimate partner violence, elder abuse or child abuse. Outcome measures were perceived capabilities, reported case management, and perceived intervention barriers, as obtained by self-assessment questionnaires at baseline and within a follow-up period of six months.


A total of 150 participants took part in 15 workshops. Perception of knowledge and skills, routine screening frequency and reported case management all demonstrated significant improvement. A clear trend to elevation in detection, evaluation and referral rates was found. Ranking of intervention barriers was compared with baseline values and lack of knowledge, lack of skills and psychological difficulties diminished significantly.


An SP-based experiential DV training program for physicians improved perceived capabilities and overall management of DV cases and reduced intervention barriers in a follow-up period of six months.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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