Accusations of abuse are extremely serious. They can affect a person’s freedom, family life and overall reputation in his community. Many people become the targets of false domestic violence allegations, and a charge will go far enough in the legal process to significantly affect the quality of the accused suspect’s life for some time.
That’s why when there is a story related to domestic violence that signifies an intensified focus on the matter, we feel it is important to share. For the most part, there is no doubt that medical professionals have the best interest of their patients’ health at heart. And a recent call to action will make domestic violence screening a more consistent part of a routine visit.
According to the Los Angeles Times, the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists is formally urging those working in that field to make screening for possible violence among patients a larger focus. If the professionals have reason to believe that abuse is taking place, they are encouraged to offer support and refer the patients to parties they believe could help them.
Obstetricians and gynecologists are the subjects of this request because they work most often with women who are in their reproductive years. Studies show that during those years, women tend to be victimized by intimate violence the most. The ACOG wants doctors and patients to begin feeling that conversations about violence are a normal, expected part of a medical visit.
How this change in a woman’s visit to the doctor will affect the rate of domestic violence reports remains to be seen. What doesn’t change is the need for those accused of abuse to rely on an aggressive defense attorney who can guide them through what can be a stressful, confusing, threatening process.
Los Angeles Times: “OB-GYNs, neurologists call for domestic violence screening,” Shari Roan, Jan. 25, 2012