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Women who are abused unlikely to get mental healthcare

Photo courtesy of

Photo courtesy of

Women abused by an intimate partner are far more likely to get medical attention than mental health care to treat depression, post-traumatic stress disorder and other mental illnesses that can result from violence, a new study says.

Mansoo Yu, an assistant professor of social work in the College of Human Environmental Sciences University of Missouri, studied women who were the victims of abuse.

Mansoo Yoo. Photo courtesy of the University of Missouri.

Mansoo Yoo. Photo courtesy of the University of Missouri.

More than half suffered from depression and post-traumatic stress but the majority did not get treatment from a mental health professional, Yu found.

However,  a large number did visit a medical doctor, he said.

“Social stigma, shame, privacy concerns, healthcare costs and lack of information may prevent survivors from getting the (mental healthcare) help they need,” Yu said in an article about the study that was posted on

Yu’s study was published in the Social Work in Mental Health.


Social workers help clients overcome mental illness. To learn more visit the National Association of Social Workers’ “Help Starts Here” Mind and Spirit website.

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