Domestic Violence Is A Social Problem And The Role Of Nurses In Detection

Women are often victims of domestic abuse. According to Robinson (2010), 18-25% of women seen in the Emergency Department are victims of intimate partner abuse, and only 5% are detected by healthcare workers. There is a great opportunity for improvement in the detection of those suffering from domestic abuse. ER nurses may be the first person to address the issue with the victim and advocate for her, which means it is crucial that the nurse is aware of what signs and willing to address this sensitive topic with the patient.

Challenges in Addressing Domestic Abuse: Barriers and Concerns

Nurses will ask their patients personal questions regarding bowel and bladder functions and sexual activity but seem to shy away from the probing questions regarding domestic abuse. In the study conducted by interviewing 13 emergency rooms, nurses determined that there are three common reasons that nurses are hesitant to further investigate the possibility that a patient is a victim of abuse. They are:

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  1. Myths and Stereotypes. It is often assumed that even if abuse is suspected and confirmed, there will be a lack of follow-up on the patient’s part once the patient leaves the ER. There is also the thought that abuse isn’t a health problem but a social problem and not something to be addressed by the ED nurse.
  2. Demeanor. Several nurses interviewed admitted they only screened patients who had behaviors they would expect to see in someone who was experiencing abuse.
  3. Frustrations. Some nurses felt frustration knowing that even if they did address the topic of abuse and offer suggestions for follow-up, they knew that it was not something that could be resolved quickly.

Although the nurses interviewed for this study did admit to several barriers to screening for domestic abuse, they did also report that there was satisfaction gained when they were able to identify a patient who was experiencing domestic abuse and able to aid them in finding resources to leave their current situation (Robinson, 2010). It is important that nurses continue to screen for and identify these patients and advocate for them.

Providing Resources and Support

There are several hotlines that can assist women in seeking shelter and protection from an abusive partner, including Utah Domestic Violence Coalition Hotline: 800-897-5464, National Domestic Violence Hotline 800-799-7233, and YWCA 24-hour Crisis Line 801-537-8600.


  1. Robinson, R. (2010). Myths and Stereotypes: How registered nurses screen for intimate partner violence. Journal of Emergency Nursing, 36(6), 572-576. DOI:

Should Marijuana Be Used For Medical Purposes: Opioid Crisis & Employee Rights

There are eight states where marijuana is one hundred legal for recreational and medicinal use: Alaska, California, Colorado, Maine, Massachusetts, Nevada, Oregon, and Washington. Forty-six states where CBD is legal with a prescription for medicinal use. Seventeen states have specific legislation for the THC levels found in these (including Indiana). Twenty-nine states fully legalized medical CBD and marijuana.

How this helps solves the opioid crisis

How does now allowing employers to fire an employee on the basis of THC in their system help solve the opioid crisis? Opioids are proscribed by doctors, while CBD is often recommended by doctors for use alternatively from opioids. People in Indiana should not be disadvantaged for taking a more natural route in their healthcare as “approximately 90% of individuals with [opioid] addiction begin using illicit drugs before the age of 18.

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Definition of illicit drugs (two categories): Illegal to process, sell, and consume (cocaine, meth, and heroin) and legal to process, sell, and consume when prescribed by a physician but then misused by either: Person for whom the drugs were prescribed or persons who obtained the drugs illegally.

Since 1999, the number of opioid poisoning deaths increased by 500 percent.” According to the CDC, the “best ways to prevent opioid overdose deaths are to improve opioid prescribing, reduce exposure to opioids, prevent misuse, and treat opioid use disorder.”

Is the legalization of marijuana the next step? Dealing with hash oil/marijuana punishments. Possession of hash oil/marijuana. Definition of marijuana.

Would this reduce the number of employees using CBD and THC instead of opioids for pain management because they are afraid of being fired? Most experts say no, it is not possible to overdose on THC/marijuana/CBD. The CDC also states that it is unlikely to have a fatal overdose of marijuana. This does not imply that marijuana is completely harmless, but that the use of too much marijuana leads to “extreme confusion, anxiety, paranoia, panic, fast heart rate, delusions or hallucinations, increased blood pressure, and severe nausea or vomiting. In some cases, these reactions can lead to unintentional injuries such as a motor vehicle crash, fall, or poisoning.”

Definition of an opiate “Substance having an addition-forming or addiction-sustaining liability similar to morphine or being capable of conversion into a drug having addiction-forming or addiction-sustaining liability.” Does not include, unless specifically designated as control under IC § 35-48-2.


Indiana does not currently have any laws protecting employees from being fired for using CBD or THC, even when not on the job site. Should we create laws similar to Colorado to reduce the outrageous numbers of opioid-related deaths?

Why is marijuana still illegal in Indiana when it is legal in seventeen other states? A substance that stays in someone’s system for as long as CBD and THC do should not affect a person’s employment status if it does not affect their job performance. Using CBD and THC as safe alternatives to opioids might reduce the number of deaths and addicts in Indiana.

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