PKG Fellow Publishes Article in The American Surgeon
Based on the work conducted during her PKG Fellowship and Social Impact Internship, Jupneet Singh ’23 (Course 5) recently published a research article in The American Surgeon. In Examining the Domestic Violence Crisis in Ventura County in the Wake of the COVID-19 Pandemic, Jupneet studied the effects of COVID-19 on domestic violence rates using client data from the Ventura County Family Justice Centers database. Read this abbreviated section and link to the full article below.
Examining the Domestic Violence Crisis in Ventura County in the Wake of the COVID-19 Pandemic
Jupneet K. Singh, BEd and Thomas K. Duncan, DO
Domestic violence (DV) worsened during COVID-19 and Family Justice Centers (FJCs) were, even more so than before, a critical part of providing services to DV victims. This study characterizes the clinical and sociodemographic features of the clients that come to the Ventura County FJC (VCFJC) and examines the effect of COVID-19, thus informing awareness of services available to victims of DV.
This was a retrospective cohort study utilizing the VCFJC database from 2019 to 2021. All client data normally collected was studied. A comparison of pre-COVID and post-COVID data was also conducted.
There were 3488 client entries. Clients were mostly female (79% ; n = 3488), aged 25-40 (31.73% ; n = 3448), white/Caucasian (44.42% ; n = 3448) or Hispanic/Latinx (42.41% ; n = 3448). Clients most often requested restraining orders (72.41% ; n = 3448), and most commonly reported DV [physical] (47.90% ; n = 3448). Most health-insured clients were covered by MediCal (45.06% ; n = 2732). Pre- and post-COVID analysis showed the highest increases in DV [physical] (odds ratio = 1.26, P < .0007) and stalking/harassment (odds ratio = 2.45, P < .0007), and decreases in all Initial Service Request categories except one.
In serving clients affected by DV, FJCs are an important service for health care providers to be aware of. Post-COVID, clients reported DV and stalking/harassment at much higher percentages, which is consistent with national studies on the pandemic. The most alarming finding was the steep decrease in Initial Service Requests.