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Ellsberg, M., Ugarte, W., Ovince, J., Blackwell, A., & Quintanilla, M. (2020). BMJ Global Health. 5, e002339. 

Abstract 

 Introduction Although intimate partner violence (IPV) affects an estimated one out of three women globally, evidence on violence prevention is still scarce. No studies have measured long-term change in larger populations over a prolonged period. Methods The aim of this study was to measure changes in the prevalence of IPV in León, Nicaragua, between 1995 and 2016. The 2016 study interviewed 846 ever-partnered women aged 15 to 49 regarding experiences of physical, sexual and emotional IPV. These findings were analysed together with comparable data collected from 354 women in 1995. Multivariate logistic regression modelling was carried out on a pooled data set to identify differences between the two studies while controlling for potential confounding factors. Results Lifetime physical IPV decreased from 54.8 to 27.6 per cent (adjusted OR (AOR) 0.37; 95%CI 0.28 to 0.49) and 12-month prevalence of physical IPV decreased from 28.2 to 8.3 per cent (AOR 0.29; 95%CI 0.20 to 0.42), respectively. Similar decreases were found in lifetime and 12-month emotional IPV. No significant difference was found in the prevalence of lifetime sexual violence between the two time periods. Conclusions The results suggest that the reduction in IPV was not due to demographic shifts, such as increased education or age, but reflects a true decrease in the prevalence of IPV. The decrease is not likely to have occurred on its own, and may be attributable to multisectoral efforts by the Nicaraguan government, international donors and the Nicaraguan women’s movement to increase women’s knowledge of their rights, as well as access to justice and services for survivors during this time period 

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