Pathways to Responsiveness

Atawhai has identified key system pathways that can be strengthened to make it easier for primary care professionals to respond to whānau and families impacted by violence.

Atawhai utilises innovative research methods and strategies to implement and disseminate developed resources regionally and nationally. We encourage health organisations, community service providers or other system stakeholders to support this work.

We invite you to join our network and receive research updates or let us know how else you can contribute by contacting us.

Establishing family violence as a key determinant of ill-health

Atawhai recognises family violence as a key determinant of ill-health. To prevent future violence and harm, the value of responding to family violence must be explicitly recognised within health care policy and practice. Atawhai is advocating for health sector leadership to support this to occur, along with visibility of the work that is already occurring on the frontline. Explicitly recognising family violence as a key determinant of ill-health will allow for opportunities to support whānau and families before violence occurs.

Connecting medical and community service provision

Atawhai found providers in the clinical setting can struggle in knowing which person, or community service to refer to, while community services rely on referrals to provide help to whānau and families. By growing meaningful connections between professionals across these settings, Atawhai is breaking down barriers to better support family violence responsiveness. When these settings can work together collectively, accountability to whānau health and wellbeing can be shared, reducing the burden of responsibility on individual health professionals.

Advocating for clinical and cultural supervision

Atawhai found many primary care professionals experience doubt, uncertainty, frustration, and anger when not knowing what to do, or how to help someone experiencing or using violence. As practitioners, it is important to realise we cannot stop what has happened or know what will happen next. Atawhai advocates for formal clinical and cultural supervision and peer support to improve responsiveness to family violence. It is of critical importance to protect the health and wellbeing of primary care professionals to ensure their capability in caring for others.

Tuituia: Connecting to information and support

Atawhai found there are many health and social care services offering support for family violence in the Bay of Plenty. Yet, knowledge of these services, such as the care provided, eligibility criteria, timeframes, funding, and quality are unknown by many. Keeping referral information up-to-date and connected across primary care settings is a common problem. Rather than centralising information for access in one location, the Atawhai network connects people to information through trusted relationships within the network.