Costa Rica Coffee Guide

Costa Rica sees rise in domestic violence

April 12, 2016

The number of domestic violence victims treated at public hospitals of the Social Security System, or Caja, has increased by one-third over the last three years, according to a report released this week.

The number of cases rose from 9,823 in 2013 to 13,036 in 2015, or 33 percent.

This means the rate of domestic violence rose from 20.8 cases per 10,000 inhabitants in 2013 to 27.3 last year, Caja reported.

Caja epidemiologist Leandra Abarca said these figures show the need for greater efforts to address such violence. “We’re not detecting the problem in its early stages but rather when the victims come for help at our hospitals,” she said.

The report categorized domestic violence into four types: physical, sexual, psychological and neglect.

The highest percentage of domestic violence patients seen at Caja hospitals last year were victims of physical abuse — 25 percent.

Overall, a small majority of domestic violence patients were women, accounting for 52 percent of all cases. Of these, most victims were adolescents and adults between ages 20 and 39.

Of the male patients, most were children and adolescents under 19.

The most common forms of violence among all adolescents, girls and boys, were sexual abuse and neglect.

Geographically, the highest rates of domestic violence were seen in rural areas. The Puntarenas canton of Quepos topped the list with 101 domestic violence cases per 10,000 inhabitants. Turrubares in San José province was second with 98 cases per 10,000 inhabitants, followed by Los Chiles in Alajuela and the Cartago cantons of Jiménez and El Guarco.

According to the World Health Organization (WHO), violence is among the leading causes of illness and death worldwide. Some 1.4 million people die each year from violence, according to the WHO, and violence also leaves many with physical, sexual, reproductive and mental consequences.

Violence also contributes to cancer, heart disease, stroke and HIV/AIDS, as victims often try to cope with their traumatic experiences by adopting risky behaviors such as using tobacco, alcohol and drugs, as well as engaging in unsafe sex. “In this regard too, violence can be a driver of early death and lifelong ill health,” WHO noted in a 2014 report.

The long-term effects of violence go beyond physical harm, causing depression, anxiety and other mental health disorders, the organization noted.

You may be interested

Some 34 million jobs lost in Latin America due to pandemic
Business
3339 views
Business
3339 views

Some 34 million jobs lost in Latin America due to pandemic

Carlos MANDUJANO / AFP - September 30, 2020

The two aspirers for the presidency of Costa Rica, the evangelical preacher Fabricio Alvarado and the former minister Carlos Alvarado, reach the closing of the electoral campaign for April 1st with a technical draw, according to a poll disclosed this Friday.

CureVac launches second stage of vaccine clinical trials in Peru and Panama
News
21360 views
News
21360 views

CureVac launches second stage of vaccine clinical trials in Peru and Panama

AFP - September 30, 2020

The German pharmaceutical company CureVac announced that it has started Phase 2 clinical trials of its experimental vaccine against Covid-19,…

Costa Rica mired in difficult internal negotiations regarding agreement with IMF
Costa Rica
902 views
Costa Rica
902 views

Costa Rica mired in difficult internal negotiations regarding agreement with IMF

Marco SIBAJA / AFP - September 30, 2020

Costa Rica is immersed in difficult internal negotiations as it seeks an agreement with the International Monetary Fund (IMF) to…