To determine predictors associated with physical violence during pregnancy, and to determine the relationship between exposure to intimate partner violence during pregnancy and women’s health and suicide ideation in Guyana.
A secondary data analysis of a cross-sectional household survey. Multivariate logistic regression
models were fitted to the data to estimate the association between physical violence during pregnancy, controlling partner behavior, and other predictors. Ordered logistic regression models were fitted to estimate the association between physical violence during pregnancy and women’s health, and lifetime physical partner violence and overall health. Logistic regression models were fitted to estimate associations between physical violence during pregnancy and lifetime physical partner violence and overall health and suicide ideation.
The prevalence of lifetime physical/sexual intimate partner violence was 38.8%, current physical/
sexual intimate partner violence 11.1%, and violence during pregnancy 9.2%. Controlling partner behavior was significantly and positively associated with maternal experience of physical violence during pregnancy. Experiencing physical partner violence during pregnancy, but not lifetime physical partner violence, was associated with significantly increased odds of poor overall health. Physical violence during pregnancy and lifetime physical violence were both significantly associated with increased odds of suicide ideation.
The prevalence of violence during pregnancy in Guyana is high and is associated with adverse
health outcomes. These findings suggest the need for intimate partner violence prevention, and for integrating intimate partner violence screening and treatment into antenatal care, reproductive health services, and maternal and child health programs and services to identify and treat at-risk women.