CDHB focus on abuse of pregnant women

The Press 31 March 2009

Canterbury hospitals are intensifying their fight against domestic violence as figures show one in six pregnant women is physically abused. The Canterbury District Health Board (CDHB) is hiring a family violence co-ordinator to review all relevant policies. Experts say abuse is at epidemic proportions in New Zealand, and doctors and midwives are well placed to detect it.

Research cited in the latest edition of CDHB magazine HealthFirst showed that up to one in six women was abused during pregnancy in New Zealand. The board executive in charge of the new family-violence role, Hector Matthews, said the co-ordinator’s role was established because of high-profile deaths of women and children around the country.