-- Mary Elizabeth Dallas
MONDAY, Feb. 27 (HealthDay News) -- Disabled adults are at
higher risk of being victims of violence than adults who aren't
disabled, new research finds.
Those with mental illness are particularly vulnerable, with
about 24 percent reporting having experienced physical, sexual or
"intimate partner" violence during the past year, according to the
study published online Feb. 27 in
For the study, researchers from Liverpool John Moores University
in England analyzed the results of 26 prior studies that included
some 21,500 people with a range of physical and mental disabilities
from seven countries -- Australia, Canada, New Zealand, Taiwan, the
United Kingdom, United States and South Africa.
The meta-analysis, which pools the results of prior research,
found that disabled adults are 1.5 times more likely to be a
violence victim than those without a disability, while adults with
mental illness are nearly four times more likely to be
About 3 percent of people with physical, mental, emotional or
other health problems that restrict activities experienced violence
within the past 12 months, the investigators found.
About 6 percent of people with intellectual disabilities were
victimized in the past year, while one-quarter of people with
mental illnesses were, the researchers said.
"Lifetime exposure to violence, and the proportions of individuals with disability who are directly threatened with violence or otherwise live in fear of becoming a victim, are likely to be substantially higher than our estimate," study lead author Mark Bellis said in a university news release.
The U.S. National Alliance on Mental Illness has facts about
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