Epidemiological and Spatial Characteristics of Interpersonal Physical Violence in a Brazilian City: A Comparative Study of Violent Injury Hotspots in Familial Versus Non-Familial Settings, 2012-2014

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Yes, item is peer reviewed.
Scholarly level: 
Graduate student (PhD)
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Barbosa KGN, Walker BB, Schuurman N, Cavalcanti SDLB, Ferreira e Ferreira E, Ferreira RC (2019) Epidemiological and spatial characteristics of interpersonal physical violence in a Brazilian city: A comparative study of violent injury hotspots in familial versus non-familial settings, 2012-2014. PLoS ONE 14(1): e0208304. DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0208304

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This study explores both epidemiological and spatial characteristics of domestic and communityinterpersonal violence. We evaluated three years of violent trauma data in themedium-sized city of Campina Grande in North-Eastern Brazil. 3559 medical and police recordswere analysed and 2563 cases were included to identify socioeconomic and geographicpatterns. The associations between sociodemographic, temporal, and incidentcharacteristics and domestic violence were evaluated using logistic regression. Using GeographicalInformation Systems (GIS), we mapped victims’ household addresses to identifyspatial patterns. We observed a higher incidence of domestic violence among female,divorced, or co-habitant persons when the violent event was perpetrated by males. Therewas only a minor chance of occurrence of domestic violence involving firearms. 8 out of 10victims of domestic violence were women and the female/male ratio was 3.3 times greaterthan that of community violence (violence not occurring in the home). Unmarried coupleswere twice as likely to have a victim in the family unit (OR = 2.03), compared to married couples.Seven geographical hotspots were identified. The greatest density of hotspots wasfound in the East side of the study area and was spatially coincident with the lowest averagefamily income. Aggressor sex, marital status, and mechanism of injury were most associatedwith domestic violence, and low-income neighbourhoods were coincident with bothdomestic and non-domestic violence hotspots. These results provide further evidence thateconomic poverty may play a significant role in interpersonal, and particularly domesticviolence.

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