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Record linkage of domestic assault victims between an emergency department and the police
  1. Adrian Boyle,
  2. James Kirkbride,
  3. Peter Jones
  1. Department of Psychiatry, Addenbooke’s Hospital, Cambridge, UK
  1. Correspondence to:
 Dr A Boyle
 Department of Psychiatry, Box 189, Addenbrooke’s Hospital, Hills Road, Cambridge CB4 6DU, UK;

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Community surveys show that domestic violence is a common problem affecting about 5% of the population each year.1 Around 1% of emergency department visits in the UK are attributable to domestic assault.2,3 The British Home Office estimates that 2.9 million domestic assault injuries occur every year in the UK.1 It is not clear how many domestic assault victims who present to an emergency department also have their assault recorded as a crime by the police. We aimed to identify what proportion of cases presenting at the emergency department had their assault recorded by the police and what the completeness of these lists were.


We compared confidential lists of recorded domestic assault victims from the Cambridgeshire and Essex constabularies with a list from the emergency department of Addenbrooke’s Hospital, Cambridge, over 2001. Cases …

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  • Funding: Adrian Boyle holds a Health Service Research Fellowship. James Kirkbride is supported by Stanley Medical Research as a doctoral student.

  • Conflicts of interest: none declared.

  • Ethical approval: this project received ethical approval from the Cambridge Local Ethics Research Committee

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