A new effort is underway to expand access to support and resources for domestic violence survivors in Ohio during the COVID-19 pandemic.
The Ohio Domestic Violence Network and the Ohio Pharmacists Association have teamed up to make pharmacies places where survivors can easily access help. Stay-at-home orders and social distancing recommendations are linked to an increase in domestic violence cases, making it more difficult for survivors to seek help. OPA spokesperson Myriam Shaw Ojeda says pharmacies will provide survivors with educational resources, including flyers that can be dropped in medication bags with information on accessing housing, food, medical care and medications:
“We are probably one of the most accessible health care providers to all of our patients at this time, and therefore it was a very good opportunity to combine forces with ODVN and try and help patients who are suffering at the moment.”
Shaw Ojeda hopes it will help patients talk to their health-care provider about safety:
“When someone is struggling with an unsafe environment at home it does affect their health, it does affect other parts of their lives. And so, as pharmacists we want to make sure that our patients have an overall healthy outlook, not just in relation to their medication.”
One hundred Ohio pharmacies have signed up to participate so far.