Publication Date


Degree Type

Master's Project

Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)



First Advisor

Irene Gonzales

Second Advisor

Barbara Willard


interpersonal violence-IPV, cultural identity, abuse in pregnancy, assessment barriers


Objective: Identification of barriers to assessment of interpersonal violence (IPV) in pregnant women. Design: An exploratory descriptive study Setting: The labor and delivery department of a public county hospital Participants: 34 nurses, representing 8 cultures and 13 native languages, completed the survey, and 34 laboring patient's medical records were reviewed. Main Outcome Measures: Any specific barriers, identified by nurses, to assessing for IPV in laboring patients Results: Medical record review revealed 50% assessment rate in labor triage patients. Survey results revealed that cultural identity (85 %) was not a significant barrier. Approximately 65% of nurses agreed that in their culture it was acceptable to ask patients about IPV. Over 88% of nurses stated their culture strongly supported asking about IPV. Over 50% of nurses identified language as the single most prevalent barrier in both US and non-US born nurses. Conclusion: Labor nurse's cultural identity, in itself, was not a barrier to the assessment for IPV. A nurse's inability to speak the same language as the patient emerged as the single most significant barrier in the assessment for IPV in this study.