Intimate Partner Physical Injury Risk Assessment in a Military Sample

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Objectives: This paper describes the development of an actuarial risk assessment instrument (the Intimate Partner Physical Injury-Risk Assessment Tool; IPPI-RAT) designed to be used by military providers to assess the likelihood that an individual who has had an alleged incident of intimate partner violence (IPV) will have a subsequent incident resulting in a physical injury to the victim. Method: Providers used a 58-item structured risk assessment tool to assess individuals with alleged IPV incidents (N = 199). Across a 6-month period, alleged victims were asked to call an automated telephone system to report subsequent incidents of IPV and physical injury (N = 1,082 calls). An item analysis was used to select the items that significantly differentiated the “physical injury” group from the “other” group (i.e., comparison group). Results: Fifteen items from the 58-item tool significantly predicted future physical injury and were used to create a 15-item IPPI-RAT scale. The area under the curve (Area Under the Receiver Operator Curve, AUC) value for the tool was .78, 95% CI [.71, .86]. This AUC value indicates there is a 78% chance that a randomly selected member of the physical injury group would have a higher risk score than a randomly selected member of the “other” (i.e., comparison) group. Conclusions: Findings support the tool’s utility for assessing risk for future physical injury as part of a comprehensive IPV risk assessment in reported IPV incidents in the military.

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