A Brief Intervention for Prevention of Sexually Transmitted Infection among Battered Women


  • The authors report no conflict of interest or relevant financial relationships.


Melissa A. Sutherland PhD, FNP-BC, William F. Connell School of Nursing, Boston College, 140 Commonwealth Avenue, Chestnut Hill, MA 02467.




To test the feasibility and acceptability of a combined brief nursing intervention (BNI) to prevent sexually transmitted infections (STIs) and intimate partner violence (IPV) among rural women attending a family planning clinic. The primary outcomes of interest were frequency and severity of IPV, the number of safety behaviors implemented by women, and the number of safer sex strategies used at 3 months postintervention.


A one-group pretest/posttest design.


Rural health department family planning clinics.


Eighty-eight women were screened for IPV. Nineteen (21.4%) screened positive for past-year history of IPV, and 18 completed the intervention and data collection (baseline and 3 months).


Women who screened positive for IPV were given a BNI addressing IPV and STI prevention. Severity and frequency of violence, IPV safety behaviors, and safer sex behaviors were measured at baseline and 3 months.


The frequency of physical (p = .02) and sexual (p = .05) violence decreased from baseline to 3-month follow-up. Although not statistically significant the number of safer sex behaviors reported increased from baseline to follow-up.


This BNI shows promise, though findings must be interpreted with caution due to small sample, lack of a control group, and no randomization. It was feasible to deliver the intervention in clinic settings.