January 20, 1993

Battered Women: Not-So-Hot Lines

Author Affiliations

Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons New York, NY

JAMA. 1993;269(3):356-357. doi:10.1001/jama.1993.03500030054024

To the Editor.  —The June 17, 1992, announcement by president Richard F. Jones of the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG) of the college's renewed commitment to address the needs of battered women1 was most welcome.Concerning ACOG's intention to produce the "most up-to-date information" for patients and providers, the toll-free hot-line telephone number ([800] 333-SAFE), which ACOG wishes to make "as familiar as 911," has already been changed. When I tried to call the new number ([800] 432-9777), it had been disconnected. I tried the New York State hot line for battered women ([800] 942-6906), but the operator merely referred me to Victim Services, which (at 2 AM) was busy for at least 45 minutes before I gave up.Hot lines can only help battered women and become familiar if they are accessible and helpful. Right now they are not so hot, and what is most familiar