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Gaceta Sanitaria

Print version ISSN 0213-9111


PLAZAOLA-CASTANO, Juncal; RUIZ-PEREZ, Isabel  and  HERNANDEZ-TORRES, Elisa. Validation of the short version of the Woman Abuse Screening Tool for use in primary care in Spain. Gac Sanit [online]. 2008, vol.22, n.5, pp.415-420. ISSN 0213-9111.

Objective: To examine the criterion validity of the Spanish short version of the Woman Abuse Screening Tool (WAST) to identify battered women among those attending primary health care services in Spain. Material and methods: We performed a cross-sectional study in two primary care centers in Granada. A total of 390 women between 18 and 70 years old were studied. The Index of Spouse Abuse (ISA) was used as the gold standard. Results: Two score criteria were used. Using the first criterion, 132 women (33.8%) scored positively. The sensitivity was 91.4%, specificity was 76.2%, positive predictive value 40.2% and negative predictive value was 98.1%. Five women with a negative WAST score obtained a positive ISA score (false negatives). Seventy-nine women obtained a positive score in the WAST, with a negative score in the ISA (false positives). Conclusions: These results coincide with the sensitivity and specificity values obtained in the validation of the instrument in Spanish-speaking women in the USA, which also recommend the use of the first criterion. The Spanish short version of the WAST is a suitable instrument to be used by health professionals for the early detection of gender violence in the healthcare context of Spain. However, because of its low specificity, this instrument should be used with caution.

Keywords : Spouse abuse; Screening; Primary health care.

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