Coordinated Community Responses to Domestic Violence in Six Communities: Beyond the Justice System. Health Care Providers


While the medical services protocol was developed in 1990, only recently has the medical community become increasingly involved. Much of this growth is due to the Scripps Hospital of San Diego's involvement in the emergency room pilot project developed and run by the Family Violence Prevention Fund in San Francisco. (For a complete description of this pilot, see the San Francisco site visit summary). Following their participation in the pilot program, the staff at Scripps Hospital trained medical providers throughout San Diego.

Prior to the training many medical personnel were reluctant to report a domestic violence case to the police, even though they are required to do so by law, since they felt that if they identified domestic violence, they would not have a place to refer the victim for assistance. Through the training, the involvement of an advocate on the pilot teams, and more involvement on the DV Council, medical providers are now more aware of the available services. When medical personnel report domestic violence to the police, they also may request that the police come to the hospital to issue an emergency protection order.