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Review: meta-analysis of qualitative studies generated recommendations for healthcare professionals meeting with women who had experienced intimate partner violence

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Q How do women who have been exposed to intimate partner violence perceive the responses of healthcare professionals (HCPs) when they discuss abuse, and how would they like them to respond?


Medline, Applied Social Sciences Index and Abstracts, Social Science Citation Index, CINAHL, and PsycINFO (all up to July 2004); bibliographies of retrieved studies; and researchers.


Published, English language, qualitative studies of women ⩾15 years of age who had experienced intimate partner violence; studies had to examine abused women’s views of HCPs and include verbal interaction between researchers and participants. Analysis comprised parallel identification and examination of first order constructs (ie, understandings of women as reported in original studies) and second order constructs (ie, original study author interpretations or conclusions) and methodological appraisal of individual studies; and examination of relations between constructs. 25 studies (847 women, age range 18–78 y) met the selection criteria.


14 first order constructs were identified and grouped into 3 areas. (i) Desired characteristics of HCPs. Women wanted HCPs to be …

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  • For correspondence: Dr G S Feder, Barts and the London, Queen Mary’s School of Medicine and Dentistry, London, UK. g.s.feder{at}

  • Source of funding: no external funding.