Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Electronic Medical Records Could Be Used As A Predictor Of Domestic Abuse

Date:
September 30, 2009
Source:
BMJ-British Medical Journal
Summary:
Doctors could predict a patient's risk of receiving a domestic abuse diagnosis years in advance by using electronic medical records as an early warning system, according to new research.

Doctors could predict a patient's risk of receiving a domestic abuse diagnosis years in advance by using electronic medical records as an early warning system, according to research published on the British Medical Journal website.

Lead author Dr Ben Reis from the Children's Hospital Boston Informatics Program and Harvard Medical School investigated whether the wealth of historical electronic data could be used to flag up high risk patients.

Reis says: "Doctors typically do not have the time to thoroughly review a patient's historical records during the brief clinical encounter. As a result, certain conditions that could otherwise be detected are often missed. One such condition is domestic abuse, which may go unrecognised for years as it is masked by acute complaints that form the basis of clinical encounters."

Domestic abuse is the most common cause of nonfatal injury to women in the United States, accounting for more than half the murders of women every year. It affects both men and women and can result in serious injury and death. Given this, say the researchers, "it is critical that at–risk patients be identified as early as possible".

While evidence demonstrates that screening is a useful tool in detecting domestic abuse, the authors believe that doctors "may not be taking full advantage of the growing amounts of longitudinal data stored in electronic health information systems".

The authors analysed medical records from over 500,000 non-identifiable patients over 18 years of age for whom they had at least four years' data on admissions to hospital and visits to emergency departments. The patients had over 16 million diagnoses among them and cases of abuse were identified according to established record-keeping codes.

The researchers developed a scoring system to predict which patients were likely to receive a domestic abuse diagnosis. The system was successfully able to predict future diagnoses of abuse an average of 10-30 months in advance.

Certain risk factors were strongly associated with a future diagnosis of abuse. For women the risk was highest after being seen in hospital or the emergency department for injuries, poisoning, and alcoholism. For men being seen for mental health conditions such as depression and psychosis conferred the greatest risk of a subsequent diagnosis of domestic abuse.

They also developed a prototype risk-visualisation environment which provides clinicians with instant overviews of longitudinal medical histories and related risk profiles at the point of care. According to the authors: "In conjunction with alerts for high-risk patients, this could enable clinicians to rapidly review and act on all available historical information by identifying important risk factors and long-term trends."

Reis maintains that these risk profiles could help doctors diagnose domestic abuse much earlier, perhaps many years in advance. He points out that: "With increasing amounts of data becoming available, this work has the potential to bring closer the vision of predictive medicine, where vast quantities of information are used to predict individuals' future medical risks in order to improve medical care and diagnosis."


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by BMJ-British Medical Journal. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

BMJ-British Medical Journal. "Electronic Medical Records Could Be Used As A Predictor Of Domestic Abuse." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 30 September 2009. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/09/090929194203.htm>.
BMJ-British Medical Journal. (2009, September 30). Electronic Medical Records Could Be Used As A Predictor Of Domestic Abuse. ScienceDaily. Retrieved September 16, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/09/090929194203.htm
BMJ-British Medical Journal. "Electronic Medical Records Could Be Used As A Predictor Of Domestic Abuse." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/09/090929194203.htm (accessed September 16, 2014).

Share This



More Health & Medicine News

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

President To Send 3,000 Military Personnel To Fight Ebola

President To Send 3,000 Military Personnel To Fight Ebola

Newsy (Sep. 16, 2014) — President Obama is expected to send 3,000 troops to West Africa as part of the effort to contain Ebola's spread. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Man Floats for 31 Hours in Gulf Waters

Man Floats for 31 Hours in Gulf Waters

AP (Sep. 16, 2014) — A Texas man is lucky to be alive after he and three others floated for more than a day in the Gulf of Mexico when their boat sank during a fishing trip. (Sept. 16) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Ivorians Abandon Monkey Pets in Fear Over Ebola Virus

Ivorians Abandon Monkey Pets in Fear Over Ebola Virus

AFP (Sep. 16, 2014) — Since the arrival of Ebola in Ivory Coast, Ivorians have been abandoning their pets, particularly monkeys, in the fear that they may transmit the virus. Duration: 00:47 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Study Links Male-Pattern Baldness To Prostate Cancer

Study Links Male-Pattern Baldness To Prostate Cancer

Newsy (Sep. 16, 2014) — New findings suggest men with a certain type of baldness at age 45 are 39 percent more likely to develop aggressive prostate cancer. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
 
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:  

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

    Environment News

      Technology News



      Save/Print:
      Share:  

      Free Subscriptions


      Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

      Get Social & Mobile


      Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

      Have Feedback?


      Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
      Mobile iPhone Android Web
      Follow Facebook Twitter Google+
      Subscribe RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
      Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins