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Journal Article


Jewkes R. Lancet Reg. Health Eur. 2022; 20: e100456.


(Copyright © 2022, Elsevier Publishing)








Research has shown that members of the armed forces are at increased risk of experiencing and perpetrating intimate partner violence (IPV) and the risk is greater for those with active service experience. In this respect, it forms part of an enduring legacy of service and combat.1 Despite a lack of previous epidemiological research conducted in the United Kingdom (UK) on intimate partner violence in the military, the Ministry of Defence has recognised that IPV affects service populations, and has taken the first steps towards addressing this with the adoption of the 'No Defence for Abuse' Domestic Abuse Strategy.2 Understanding the scale and the nature of the problem is critical for an appropriate intervention, and in this Issue of The Lancet Regional Health - Europe MacManus et al.3 present the findings of a large cohort study conducted in the UK military that sought to generate data on the prevalence and risk factors for experiencing and perpetrating IPV and to understand whether IPV prevalence was greater in military personnel compared to the general population. The latter was done through comparison with data from participants in the Adult Psychiatric Morbidity Survey cohort study that were matched for age and sex with the military sample, with the samples compared using adjusted logistic regression models.

The prevalence of IPV experience and perpetration in this study was about three-fold higher than in the general population cohort, which was expected based on research in other countries.4 Although the two cohorts had some differences in measures of IPV and childhood adversity, the research points to particular risks in the military population, which were higher among those with combat experience and, in particular, those who had experienced trauma. These findings further confirm the vulnerability of current and former members of the armed services to mental health problems and harmful alcohol use, which are central to explaining the elevated risk of partner violence...

Language: en


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