Beyond Recidivism: Hospital-Based Violence Intervention and Early Health and Social Outcomes

Elizabeth Gorman, Zachary Coles, Nazsa Baker, Ann Tufariello, Desiree Edemba, Michael Ordonez, Patricia Walling, David H. Livingston, Stephanie Bonne

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Scopus citations


BACKGROUND: Hospital-based violence intervention programs (HVIPs) are aimed at decreasing recurrent injury and improving the social determinants of health. We hypothesized that the HVIP intervention should be evaluated by how well it can address the immediate health and social needs of patients after injury. Our study sought to describe the experience of our nascent HVIP. STUDY DESIGN: Case management records of patients treated by the HVIP of a level 1 trauma center from July 1, 2017 to October 1, 2020 were reviewed. Inclusion criteria were as follows: Age between 18 and 60 with injury mechanisms that resulted from intentional violence. Patient-stated goals and social worker designation of patient services provided were analyzed. A subset of HVIP patients who completed the three planned study visit surveys at discharge and 1 and 3 months were compared with a cohort of violently injured patients to whom HVIP services were not available. Participants in both groups were asked to complete a battery of validated surveys to assess social outcomes and post-Traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). Repeated-measures ANOVA was used to compare the two groups. RESULTS: Two hundred and ninety-five patients met the inclusion criteria. One hundred and forty-six patients (49%) achieved their stated goals within 6 months of hospital discharge. Sixteen patients who achieved their stated goals disengaged from the program. Engagement in the HVIP resulted in significantly less PTSD at the time of hospital discharge. HVIP patients also experienced higher positive affect at hospital discharge, as described in the Positive and Negative Affect Schedule. HVIP participants were significantly more likely to achieve early positive health outcomes, such as completion of victim of crime compensation and return to school. CONCLUSIONS: Our HVIP successfully achieved patient-stated short-Term health and social goals in nearly half of all enrollees, indicating that HVIP patients are more likely to improve their social determinants of health than non-HVIP patients. Short-Term health and social outcomes were improved in HVIP patients compared with non-HVIP patients, indicating increased engagement with the healthcare system. We suggest that these outcomes should replace recidivism as a metric for the efficacy of HVIP programs.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)927-939
Number of pages13
JournalJournal of the American College of Surgeons
Issue number6
StatePublished - Dec 1 2022

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Medicine(all)


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