325.010 Physicians’ Role in Identifying Violence and Abuse


Physicians' Role in Identifying Violence and Abuse: The Texas Medical Association recognizes violence as a serious public health problem. Domestic violence is a common cause of injury and is associated with other medical and mental health conditions for both the victims and their children. Domestic violence has serious implications at the individual and community level. Physicians play a critical role in identifying violence and abuse. TMA recommends that physicians:

be informed on national recommendations regarding screening, particularly for target patient populations such as children and women;

make appropriate referrals to address intervention and safety needs as a matter of course upon identifying patients currently experiencing abuse or threats from intimates;

screen patients for psychiatric sequelae of violence and make appropriate referrals for these conditions upon identifying a history of family or other interpersonal violence; and

become aware of local resources and referral sources that have expertise in dealing with trauma from victimization.

Additionally, TMA will continue to:

support public policy addressing family and domestic violence;

inform physicians on the public health problem of domestic violence and the role of physicians and health care settings in identification and intervention;

provide physicians with resources on topics including screening recommendations and tools, guidance on documentation and follow-up care, and information about emerging issues including human trafficking;

inform physicians on resources for patients about healthy relationships and family violence; and

support additional research on prevention and intervention of abuse including domestic violence, dating and sexual assault violence, and human trafficking (CPH Rep. 2-A-05; amended CSPH Rep. 1-A-15).

Last Updated On

October 07, 2016