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Revista de Saúde Pública

On-line version ISSN 1518-8787Print version ISSN 0034-8910


OLIVEIRA, Ane R  and  D'OLIVEIRA, Ana Flávia P L. Gender-violence against the female nursing staff of a Brazilian hospital in São Paulo City. Rev. Saúde Pública [online]. 2008, vol.42, n.5, pp.868-876. ISSN 1518-8787.

OBJECTIVE: To estimate the occurrence of psychological, physical and sexual violence among female nursing staff. METHODS: This is a cross sectional study, conducted with a sample of 179 professionals (50 nurses and 129 nursing aides / nurse technicians) in a general hospital in the municipality of São Paulo, Southeastern Brazil, 2005-2006. A validated questionnaire was applied in face to face interviews with these professionals, conducted by trained interviewers. Psychological, physical and sexual forms of violence were addressed, involving both male and female aggressors who were classified as: intimate partners, family members and other aggressors such as acquaintances and strangers. A descriptive analysis was undertaken, in which the frequency of the occurrence of the different types of violence was calculated with a 95% confidence interval. RESULTS: The most frequent form of violence was intimate partner violence (63.7%; 95% CI: 55.7;70.4), followed by violence perpetrated by others (45.8%; 95% CI: 38.3;53.4) including patients and people accompanying them, colleagues within the field of health, head nurses, acquaintances and strangers. Family members occupied the third place as aggressors, (41.3%; 95% CI: 34.0;48.9), and the majority of these were fathers, brothers, uncles and cousins. In general, the nursing staff did not seek help frequently when acts of aggression occurred: only 29.7% of those who suffered intimate partner violence; 20.3% whose aggressors were others and 29.3% whose aggressors were family members sought help. Those who did not perceive their experience as a form of violence represented 31.9% of the subjects interviewed. CONCLUSIONS: The rates of gender violence among female health professionals were important, particularly with respect to violence committed by intimate partners and family members. However, the proportion of these women who sought help was low, considering the fact that this group has a significant educational level.

Keywords : Nurses [psychology]; Women, Working; Spouse Abuse; Battered Women; Violence Against Women; Domestic Violence; Cross-Sectional Studies.

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