Although I've spent the past three years researching domestic violence as I study to become an RN, I was astonished by the prevalence of several forms of coercion described in Dr. Sabella's article, particularly sex trafficking in the United States.
Assessing whether or not a patient could potentially be a victim of this crime is one of the furthest thoughts from my mind. Dr. Sabella's article opened my eyes to the horrifying reality of this practice.
In one way or another, all abuse is concealed. As health care professionals, we must be vigilant in looking for it. If we fail to look below the surface when caring for patients, then we risk simply patching up a victim of abuse and allowing her or him to be subjected to further torture.
Stephanie J. Prior