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ORIGINAL ARTICLE
Year : 2010  |  Volume : 19  |  Issue : 2  |  Page : 90-93

Perception of violence against women among future health professionals in an industrial township


1 Resident in Paediatrics, Narayana Hrudayalaya, Bangalore, Karnataka, India
2 Department of Community Medicine, D. Y. Patil Medical College, Pune, Maharashtra, India

Correspondence Address:
Amitav Banerjee
Department of Community Medicine, D. Y. Patil Medical College, Pune - 411 018, Maharashtra
India
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Source of Support: Study partly based on Indian Council of Medical Research funded Short Term Student Project, Conflict of Interest: None


DOI: 10.4103/0972-6748.90337

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Background: There is a growing concern that medical education does not prepare the future health professional to effectively deal with violence against women. Against this background, the present study was undertaken. Aims: To elicit perception of violence against women among medical and nursing students, and study the association of these perceptions with certain demographic and social variables. Settings and Design: The study was conducted among students of a Medical College and a Nursing College both located at Pune, India. A cross-sectional descriptive study design was used to elicit the perceptions of the study subjects toward violence against women. Materials and Methods: A random sample of 125 medical and 125 nursing students was selected. Both quantitative and qualitative methods of data collection were employed. Qualitative data collection was done by focus group discussions with key persons such as dean and faculty of medical and nursing colleges. The syllabi of medical and nursing colleges were also reviewed for any topic related to domestic violence. Statistical analysis: The WHO/CDC Statistical and Epidemiology Software Package was used for data entry and statistical analysis. Various associations were explored by nonparametric tests (Mann-Whitney) for ordinal data and by Chi-square and ODDS ratio (with 95% confidence intervals), for categorical data. Results: Overall 35.6% (95% CI 29.1%-42.6%) of the study participants had witnessed/were aware of violence against women among their family/acquaintances. This awareness was significantly more among female respondents (OR=2.65, 95% CI 1.37-5.16), Chi Sq=9.81, df=1, P=0.001. Other socioeconomic variables such as urban/rural background, education, and income were not associated with perception about family violence. Majority (>80%) agreed/strongly agreed that social agencies should do more to help battered women. Course content on violence against women was lacking in both medical and nursing syllabi. Conclusions: Female participants were generally more perceptive about the issue. Medical and nursing syllabi should incorporate strategies for dealing with violence against women.


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