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American Journal of Preventive Medicine

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Intimate partner violence -- Economic aspects -- United States, Intimate partner violence -- Prevention, Women -- Violence against -- Economic aspects


Introduction: This study estimated the U.S. lifetime per-victim cost and economic burden of intimate partner violence.

Methods: Data from previous studies were combined with 2012 U.S. National Intimate Partner and Sexual Violence Survey data in a mathematical model. Intimate partner violence was defined as contact sexual violence, physical violence, or stalking victimization with related impact (e.g., missed work days). Costs included attributable impaired health, lost productivity, and criminal justice costs from the societal perspective. Mean age at first victimization was assessed as 25 years. Future costs were discounted by 3%. The main outcome measures were the mean per-victim (female and male) and total population (or economic burden) lifetime cost of intimate partner violence. Secondary outcome measures were marginal outcome probabilities among victims (e.g., anxiety disorder) and associated costs. Analysis was conducted in 2017.

Results: The estimated intimate partner violence lifetime cost was $103,767 per female victim and $23,414 per male victim, or a population economic burden of nearly $3.6 trillion (2014 US$) over victims’ lifetimes, based on 43 million U.S. adults with victimization history. This estimate included $2.1 trillion (59% of total) in medical costs, $1.3 trillion (37%) in lost productivity among victims and perpetrators, $73 billion (2%) in criminal justice activities, and $62 billion (2%) in other costs, including victim property loss or damage. Government sources pay an estimated $1.3 trillion (37%) of the lifetime economic burden.

Conclusions: Preventing intimate partner violence is possible and could avoid substantial costs. These findings can inform the potential benefit of prioritizing prevention, as well as evaluation of implemented prevention strategies.


This is the author’s version of a work that was accepted for publication in American Journal of Preventive Medicine. Changes resulting from the publishing process, such as peer review, editing, corrections, structural formatting, and other quality control mechanisms may not be reflected in this document. Changes may have been made to this work since it was submitted for publication. A definitive version was subsequently published in American Journal of Preventive Medicine Volume 55, Issue 4, October 2018, Pages 433-444, 2018. Article is available online at:

This manuscript version is made available under the CC-BY-NC-ND 4.0 license



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