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African Journal of Primary Health Care & Family Medicine

On-line version ISSN 2071-2936
Print version ISSN 2071-2928

Abstract

BIKINESI, Leonard T.; MASH, Robert  and  JOYNER, Kate. Prevalence of intimate partner violence and associated factors amongst women attending antenatal care at Outapi clinic, Namibia: A descriptive survey. Afr. j. prim. health care fam. med. (Online) [online]. 2017, vol.9, n.1, pp.1-6. ISSN 2071-2936.  http://dx.doi.org/10.4102/phcfm.v9i1.1512.

BACKGROUND: Intimate partner violence (IPV) is a significant and largely hidden public health problem for all women and, during pregnancy, can have significant effects on the health of both mother and the unborn baby. Previous Namibian studies suggest rates of IPV as high as 36%, although few studies have been conducted in primary care. AIM: To determine the prevalence of IPV amongst women attending antenatal care. SETTING: Outapi primary care clinic, Namibia. METHODS: A descriptive survey administering a validated questionnaire to 386 consecutive participants. RESULTS: The mean age of the participants was 27.5 years (standard deviation = 6.8), 335 (86.8%) were unmarried, 215 (55.7%) had only primary school education and 237 (61.4%) were in their third trimester. Overall, 51 participants (13.2%) had HIV and 44 (11.4%) had teenage pregnancies. The reported lifetime prevalence of IPV was 39 (10.1%), the 12-month prevalence was 35 (9.1%) and the prevalence during pregnancy was 31 (8.0%). Emotional abuse was the commonest type of abuse in 27 (7.0%). The commonest specific abusive behaviour was refusing to provide money to run the house or look after the children whilst the partner spent money on his priorities (4.9%). Increased maternal age was associated with an increase in the occurrence of IPV. CONCLUSION: The reported lifetime prevalence of IPV was 10.1%, with emotional abuse being the commonest type of abuse. Increased age was associated with an increase in reported IPV. IPV is significant enough to warrant that healthcare providers develop guidelines to assist women affected by IPV in Namibia.

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