WEDNESDAY, Feb. 23, 2022 (HealthDay News) — More than one in four ever-partnered women aged 15 to 49 years globally have experienced intimate partner violence, according to a study published online Feb. 16 in The Lancet.

Lynnmarie Sardinha, Ph.D., from the World Health Organization in Geneva, Switzerland, and colleagues used the WHO Global Database on Prevalence of Violence Against Women to estimate physical and sexual violence against women (aged 15 years and older) by male intimate partners. The database included 366 eligible studies (2 million women in 161 countries between 2000 and 2018).

The researchers found that 27 percent of ever-partnered women aged 15 to 49 years experienced physical or sexual intimate partner violence or both types of violence in their lifetime, with 13 percent experiencing it in the previous year before they were surveyed. This violence affects adolescent girls and young women (ages 15 to 19 years: 24 percent; ages 19 to 24 years: 26 percent). Women in low-income countries reported higher lifetime and higher past-year prevalence versus those in high-income countries.

“Governments are not on track to meet the 2030 UN Agenda for Sustainable Development Goal targets on the elimination of violence against women and girls, despite robust evidence that intimate partner violence can be prevented,” the authors write. “There is an urgent need to invest in effective multisectoral interventions, strengthen the public health response to intimate partner violence, and ensure it is addressed in post-COVID-19 reconstruction efforts.”

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