Journal of Traumatic Stress Disorders & Treatment ISSN: 2324-8947

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Evaluating a Brief Group Program for Women Victims of Intimate Partner Abuse

Study background
Despite the established utility of a 12-week dialectical behavior therapy (DBT) group program for women victims of intimate partner abuse (IPA), the dropout rate between initial contact and program completion has been as high as 50%, largely due to chaos in participants’ lives.
Methods
To establish better treatment engagement and retention, and thus to help more women, a two-day DBT group program was developed and evaluated. In addition, psychological measures including general distress, depression, hopelessness, and post-traumatic stress disorder severity were administrated to 72 abused women
victims of intimate partner violence to see the effectiveness of the intervention.
Results
Results for 72 abused women showed that the 2-day intervention resulted in significantly higher attendance and completion rate than the 12-week standard group treatment program. From pretreatment to 3 months follow-up, participants reported significant improvements across a range of outcome variables, including
general distress, depression, hopelessness, post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) severity, and self-compassion.
Conclusions
This intervention appeared to be helpful to remove treatment barriers of intimate partner abuse victims to receive psychotherapy and beneficial for them to make their lives psychologically less distressed following abuse experiences. Suggestions for future research are discussed.

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