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Our research

Violence against women and their children affects everybody. It impacts on the health, wellbeing and safety of a significant proportion of Australians throughout all states and territories and places an enormous burden on the nation’s economy across family and community services, health and hospitals, income-support and criminal justice systems.


News and events

ANROWS hosts events as part of its knowledge transfer and exchange work, including public lectures, workshops and research launches. Details of upcoming ANROWS activities and news are available from the list on the right.



ANROWS was established by the Commonwealth and all state and territory governments of Australia to produce, disseminate and assist in applying evidence for policy and practice addressing violence against women and their children.



To support the take-up of evidence, ANROWS offers a range of resources developed from research to support practitioners and policy-makers in delivering evidence-based interventions.


Sustainability of identification and response to domestic violence in antenatal care: The SUSTAIN Study

March 2020

This project set out to understand and support the integration of evidence-based, effective screening, risk assessment and first-line response to domestic violence (DV) into the complex system of antenatal care. It built on existing resources and research to focus on women assessed as currently in "lower risk" situations, who are often not in contact with DV services but attended health services for pregnancy.

Key points

  • A new evidence-based framework has been developed, which offers practical guidance on implementing these practices.
  • The research draws on the experiences of women and practitioners in antenatal hospital clinics across Victoria and New South Wales. Their responses emphasise the importance of building relationships with pregnant women during the screening process.
  • The report recommends all antenatal care services implement a comprehensive system approach for optimal DV screening and response.


Project Lead

Prof Kelsey Hegarty, University of Melbourne

Research expertise

Prof Jo Spangaro, University of Wollongong

Prof Jane Koziol-Mclain, Auckland University of Technology

Dr Jeannette Walsh, University of New South Wales

Ms Elizabeth McLindon, University of Melbourne and Royal Women's Hospital

Practice expertise

Dr Sue Matthews, Royal Women's Hospital

Dr Angela Crombie, Bendigo Health

Ms June Dyson, Echuca Regional Health

Ms Lorena Matthews, South Eastern Sydney Local Health District

Ms Ly Johnson, Western Sydney Local Health District


Research report

Sustainability of identification and response to domestic violence in antenatal care (The SUSTAIN study)


Research summary

Identifying and responding to domestic violence in antenatal care

see also


The “REAL” Transformation Model



REAL Model. Sustainability of Identification and Response to Domestic Violence in Antenatal Care

View more


Enhancing routine screening: Better identification & response to DV in the antenatal care setting

This webinar explores the challenges of effectively implementing antenatal DV screening in complex health care settings. Drawing on findings of ANROWS research (the SUSTAIN study), this expert panel of health practitioners and researchers discuss:

  • how practitioners experience routine DV screening
  • how they have improved identification and response practices
  • key recommendations of The REAL Transformation Model
  • how the model can be implemented



Funded by Australian Commonwealth, state and territory governments under ANROWS’s 2017 core grant round.

find out more

Contact ANROWS

PO Box Q389, Queen Victoria Building NSW 1230
Phone: 61 2 8374 4000
| Email: enquiries@anrows.org.au

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