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The NHP Domestic Violence Initiative

A decade of raising awareness and supporting survivors.

The NHP Domestic Violence Initiative began in 2006, in reaction to the growing need for a healthcare-based, system-wide response to domestic violence.

New and greater evidence supports the idea that addressing domestic violence in a healthcare setting has tremendous potential to positively impact the survivor’s care, identification, assistance, and the prevention (or intervention) of future incidents.

As a managed care organization, NHP is in a critical position to address the intersection of healthcare and domestic violence. To this end, we have implemented a multi-year, multi-level domestic violence program that seeks to strengthen internal awareness and resources, create community collaborations, gather data on community needs, and implement best practices. The NHP Domestic Violence Initiative established both an Advisory Board and an internal Task Force.

What is domestic violence?

Domestic violence, also known as intimate partner violence, refers to a range of controlling and abusive behaviors. The abuser can be a partner, spouse, boyfriend/girlfriend, or significant other. The abuse may include:

  • Physical, emotional, or sexual violence
  • Attempts to limit the victim's access to financial resources
  • Cutting the victim off from work, family, and other connections

Abuse can happen to anyone, regardless of age, race, gender, sexual orientation, marital status, or income. No matter what, no one deserves to be hurt by anyone.

Domestic violence awareness & prevention at NHP

The Domestic Violence Initiative is an important part of the NHP Community Benefits Program and our mission to identify, develop, and support community resources to improve members' health and meet the needs of the underserved. As part of our multi-year domestic violence initiative, NHP has focused on three areas: funding of existing efforts, developing new programs, and coalition building.

Domestic Violence Advisory Board

The NHP Domestic Violence Advisory Board (DVAB) was chartered to assist with the development, expansion, and enhancement of domestic violence programming and resources at local Community Health Centers. The Board is comprised of community leaders chosen for their expertise and NHP staff.

The DVAB members are responsible for:

  • Providing feedback and direction for internal and external initiatives
  • Ensuring that NHP's commitment to improving the health and well-being of members and the community at large is fully represented at all levels of programming and intervention

Domestic Violence Advisory Board members include:

  • Sue Chandler, MPH, MSW, Executive Director of DOVE, Inc.
  • Leah Gallivan, MSW, MS, Chief Operating Officer of Edward M. Kennedy Health Center
  • Annie Lewis-O'Connor, Ph.D., MPH, APRN, Director of Nursing Practice, Center for Women and Newborns, Brigham and Women's Hospital
  • Sara Nechasek, Senior Project Manager, NHP
  • Joseph Peppe, M.D., Senior Medical Director, NHP
  • Joan Pernice, RNC, MS, Clinical Health Affairs Director, Massachusetts League of Community Health Centers
  • Jim Ryan, Training and Development Manager, Greater Lawrence Family Health Center
  • Richard Ward, Vice President of Strategic Partnerships, NHP

Task Force

The internal NHP Domestic Violence Task Force (with representation from various NHP departments) seeks to:

  • Provide information on Domestic Violence to other NHP employees and guide employees to community resources.
  • Increase employee awareness and encourage education about Domestic Violence related issues.
  • Promote volunteerism through our partner Domestic Violence service organizations.
  • Collaborate with Human Resources on efforts to support employees with Domestic Violence resources.

Questions or Feedback?

For questions or feedback about NHP's Domestic Violence Initiative, please contact Sara Nechasek at Please note that this is not an emergency contact. If you need assistance or resources , you can call the Massachusetts domestic violence hotline Safelink at 1-877-785-2020, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. If you or someone you know is in immediate danger please dial 911.