Abuse Assessment Screen-Disability (AAS-D): Measuring Frequency, Type, and Perpetrator of Abuse toward Women with Physical Disabilities
An interview questionnaire was presented to a multiethnic sample of 511 women, age 18-64 years, at public and private specialty clinics to determine the frequency, type, and perpetrator of abuse toward women with physical disabilities. The four-question Abuse Assessment Screen-Disability (AAS-D) instrument detected a 9.8% prevalence (50 of 511) of abuse during the previous 12 months. Using two standard physical and sexual assault questions, 7.8% of the women (40 of 511) reported abuse. The two disability-related questions detected an additional 2.0% of the women (10 of 511) as abused. Women defining themselves as other than black, white, or Hispanic (i.e., Asian, mixed ethnic background) were more likely to report physical or sexual abuse or both, whereas disability-related abuse was reported almost exclusively by white women. The perpetrator of physical or sexual abuse was most likely to be an intimate partner. Disability-related abuse was attributed equally to an intimate partner, a care provider, or a health professional. This study concludes that both traditional abuse-focused questions and disability-specific questions are required to detect abuse toward women with physical disabilities.
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