Intimate partner violence against women, health effects and health care seeking in rural Vietnam

Nguyen Dang Vung, Per-Olof Östergren, Gunilla Krantz

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43 Citations (SciVal)


Background: Health effects and health care seeking were investigated among women in rural Vietnam exposed to physical and/or sexual violence from their partner in the past year. The study was conducted within the framework of the demographic surveillance site in Bavi District, Ha Tay Province in northern Vietnam. Methods: Face-to-face interviews based on a questionnaire developed by the WHO for use in violence research were conducted with 883 randomly selected women. Past-year violence and health effects were investigated in bi and multivariate analyses. Results: The prevalence of past-year physical and/or sexual violence was 9.2 (n 81). Women exposed to violence ran a considerably elevated risk of memory loss (OR 3.7; 1.87.5), pain or discomfort (OR 3.8; 2.36.3), sadness or depression (OR 4.5; 2.77.5) and having suicidal thoughts (OR 2.8; 1.047.3) compared with those with no violence experience in the past year, when adjusted for socio-demographic factors. Almost 50 (n 40) of the women exposed to violence reported injuries and, of those, 58 had to seek health care. Conclusions: Physical and/or sexual violence are common occurrences in Vietnam, associated with pain, injuries and mental health problems in exposed women. These results point to the need for a reliable health surveillance system, along with health care and support activities for victimised women, and policy initiatives to prevent this violence.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)178-182
JournalEuropean Journal of Public Health
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2009

Subject classification (UKÄ)

  • Public Health, Global Health, Social Medicine and Epidemiology


  • violence
  • intimate partner
  • health effects
  • common illnesses
  • domestic violence
  • Vietnam


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