Domestic Violence Update

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Release date: 6/10/2022

Reviewed and renewed: 6/10/2023

Expiration date: 6/1/2024


Domestic or family violence affects everyone, regardless of gender, race, education, profession, or socioeconomic status. Both abusers and victims come from diverse backgrounds. Health care professionals who focus on a single individual are missing the dysfunctional dynamics that sustain all abusive relationships. In the context of domestic violence, professional responsibilities for health care workers fall within the primary categories of recognition, intervention, and prevention. Many of these responsibilities are legally mandated, but none can be accomplished without overall awareness.


This course defines domestic violence as family violence, and further differentiates the categories of intimate partner violence, child abuse and neglect, and elder & dependent adult abuse, mistreatment and neglect. The dynamics of domestic violence are presented using Pence and Paymer’s power and control wheel as a guiding explanatory model.1 Common forms of domestic violence are described and categorized and their effects within the family are reviewed. The core content within this course addresses concerns that are common to all forms of domestic violence. Health care professionals’ responsibilities and mandates regarding recognition, intervention, reporting, documentation and prevention of domestic violence are all addressed. This course meets criteria for continuing education in Florida and provides a general background of information that is applicable to health care professionals residing in any portion of the United States.


This course is designed for professionals at all levels and settings in the healthcare industry.


Upon completion of the educational activity, the learner should be able to:

      • Define domestic violence, intimate partner violence, child abuse and neglect, and elder and dependent adult abuse, mistreatment and neglect

      • Describe the characteristics of abuse, mistreatment, and neglect

      • Identify the primary components of the power and control wheel

      • Explain the three phases of abuse

      • Differentiate the defining characteristics for physical, sexual, psychological and environmental abuse

      • Describe screening procedures for determining whether a patient has any history of being a victim or a perpetrator of domestic violence

      • Describe the major health implications of domestic violence, child abuse, elder and dependent adult abuse, mistreatment, and neglect

      • Identify where to locate community, regional and national resources available for those affected by abuse

      • Describe how to report and implement strategies that support suspected victims of domestic violence, elder and dependent adult abuse, mistreatment or neglect in the state in which the health care professional practices


    In order to receive credit, participants should read the entire monograph, complete and submit an evaluation and score at least 70% on the self-assessment test. Certificates will be available in the transcripts upon successful completion of the self-assessment test. If you have questions about this CE activity, please contact AKH Inc. at [email protected].

    CE Credit provided by AKH Inc., Advancing Knowledge in Healthcare. 

    National Accreditations

    In support of improving patient care, AKH Inc., Advancing Knowledge in Healthcare is jointly accredited by the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education (ACCME), the Accreditation Council for Pharmacy Education (ACPE), and the American Nurses Credentialing Center (ANCC), to provide continuing education for the healthcare team.


    AKH Inc., Advancing Knowledge in Healthcare designates this enduring material for a maximum of 2.0 AMA PRA Category 1 Credit(s)™. Physicians should claim only the credit commensurate with the extent of their participation in the activity.


    Credit being awarded: 2.0 ANCC contact hours.

    Physician Associates

    Preventing Medical Errors

    AKH Inc., Advancing Knowledge in Healthcare has been authorized by the American Academy of Physician Associates (AAPA) to award AAPA Category 1 CME credit for activities planned in accordance with AAPA CME Criteria. This activity is designated for 2.0 AAPA Category 1 CME credits. Approval is valid until 6/1/2025. PAs should only claim credit commensurate with the extent of their participation.

    FL Nursing

    AKH Inc., Advancing Knowledge in Healthcare is an approved provider for nursing continuing education by the Florida Board of Nursing #50-2560. This activity is awarded 2.0 contact hours.

    Nurse Practitioners

    National Accreditations

    AKH Inc., Advancing Knowledge in Healthcare is accredited by the American Association of Nurse Practitioners as an approved provider of nurse practitioner continuing education. Provider number: 030803. This activity is approved for 2.0 contact hour(s) (which includes 0 hour(s) of pharmacology).

    FL Laboratory

    Florida Board of Clinical Laboratory Personnel Provider #JP346. 2.4 contact hours.

    FL Occupational Therapy

    Board of Occupational Therapy Practice, Provider # 29. approved for 2.0 contact hours.


    Florida Department of Health: BAP 30. Approved for 2.0 clock hours.


    Mary Kathleen Ebener PhD, RN

    Dr. Ebener teaches courses in nursing, healthcare and statistical analysis. She is currently employed at, Florida State College at Jacksonville in Jacksonville, Florida as Dean of Nursing. She holds a BSN from Illinois Wesleyan University; her MSN is from Andrews University, MI; and her PhD. is from the University of Florida, Gainesville.

    Dr. Ebener has no relevant financial relationship(s) to disclose.

    Planners and Reviewers

    Dorothy Caputo, MA, BSN, RN – CE Director of Accreditations/Lead Nurse Planner has no relevant financial relationship(s) to disclose.

    AKH and CE University staff, planners and reviewers have no relevant financial relationships to disclose.


    There is no commercial support for this activity.


    It is the policy of AKH Inc. to ensure independence, balance, objectivity, scientific rigor, and integrity in all of its continuing education activities. The faculty must disclose to the participants any significant relationships with commercial interests whose products or devices may be mentioned in the activity or with the commercial supporter of this continuing education activity. Identified conflict of interest is resolved by AKH prior to accreditation of the activity.


    This educational activity does not include discussion of uses of agents that are investigational and/or unapproved by the FDA. Please refer to the official prescribing information for each product for discussion of approved indications, contraindications, and warnings.


    AKH Inc.’s courses are designed solely to provide healthcare professionals with information to assist in their practice and professional development. The courses are researched thoroughly, utilizing current literature and including practical experiences. AKH’s courses are not to be considered a diagnostic tool to replace professional advice or treatment. The courses serve as a general guide to the healthcare professional, and therefore, they cannot be considered as giving legal, nursing, medical, or other professional advice in specific cases. AKH educational courses do not endorse commercial products. The author(s) and the publisher specifically disclaim responsibility for any adverse consequences resulting directly or indirectly from information in the courses. AKH further disclaims any responsibility for undetected errors, or from the reader’s misunderstanding of the course.