7.5 Health Service

The health service has an important role to play in addressing domestic violence, not only because health professionals deal with the physical injuries and the impact on mental health caused by domestic violence in their daily work. It is also because for many experiencing violence and abuse, contact with a health professional is often their first or only contact with a professional who could provide access to safety.

Professor Sylvia Walby's 2004 study ‘The Cost of Domestic Violence', funded by the DTI Women and Equality Unit found the total cost to the nation of domestic violence stands at nearly £23billion. An estimated £1.4 billion of these costs are incurred by the Health sector;

Hospital and ambulance 1,158,053

GP visits 24,672

Prescriptions 27,242

Travel and lost wages for GP visits 10,280

Subtotal 1220,247

Mental Health 176,000

TOTAL 1,396,247(£1.4 billion)