Overview - Centre for Family Violence Prevention

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This Centre is focused on a whole-of-health-system approach to improving the safety, health and wellbeing of women and their families.

Our Centre works on the research and evaluation needed to build an effective healthcare response to family, domestic and sexual violence.

We know many women attending hospital have experienced abuse and violence and have felt afraid of their partners or family. To enable women and their children to feel safer, we are assisting Victorian health services to step up to the challenge of preventing harm from Domestic, Family and Sexual Violence (DFSV).

We do this by enhancing identification and first-line responses from Victorian health services, so they can better support women experiencing DFSV.

Our research is practical and involves us:

  • working with women with lived experience and practitioners to test health interventions (including use of technologies) for identification, early intervention and responses for women of all ages and backgrounds
  • developing and evaluating effective, evidence-based system models of care for family, domestic and sexual violence
  • supporting healthcare staff in their clinical work with patients by promoting a workplace support program
  • building research capacity in the area of DFSV across the Women's by offering funding to clinicians who want to enhance their research skills
  • working collaboratively with survivors, practitioners, other centres at the Women's, community groups, and the Victorian and Australian governments to provide evidence to inform policy and practice (see Safer Families Centre).

This Centre is a hub for development of identification tools and therapeutic responses to assist women, children and families when DFSV is occurring.

We are developing innovative responses using new technologies for women, children and fathers to promote access to help for DFSV.

Evaluation of health system interventions in the complex hospital setting and workplace interventions support hospital staff to undertake this challenging work.  

Overall, we aim to improve pathways to safety and wellbeing for those affected by DFSV by providing evidence for new models of care for women and families within a whole-of-health system response.

The Centre for Family Violence Prevention was established at the Women’s in 2016.