Melissa Dichter

Associate Professor
Social Work
1301 Cecil B. Moore Avenue


Melissa Dichter is an associate professor in the School of Social Work at Temple University. Dr. Dichter earned her PhD in social welfare and master of social work from the University of Pennsylvania, and her BA in child development from Tufts University. She completed a postdoctoral fellowship in health services research at the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA), Center for Health Equity Research and Promotion. In addition to her role at Temple, Melissa also serves as associate director and core investigator at the VA Center for Health Equity Research and Promotion at the Crescenz (Philadelphia) VA Medical Center. Prior to her position at Temple University, Melissa was on the faculty at the University of Pennsylvania Perelman School of Medicine in the Department of Family Medicine and Community Health.

Dr. Dichter’s research focuses on individuals’ experiences with, and system responses to, intimate partner violence (IPV). Her work has examined healthcare system identification of and response to patient experience with IPV; IPV survivor experiences with criminal legal system intervention; health and social impacts of IPV experience; IPV survivor engagement in social services, social relationships, and advocacy; and IPV experiences of women military veterans. Dr. Dichter’s work has also focused on identifying and meeting the health and psychosocial needs of women military veterans and of gender and sexual minority populations. Dr. Dichter has methodological expertise in primary data collection, mixed methods and qualitative research methods, and community-engaged research.


  • PhD, Social Welfare, University of Pennsylvania
  • MSW, Clinical Social Work, University of Pennsylvania 
  • BA, Child Development, Tufts University

Curriculum Vitae 

Courses Taught




SSWG 8000

Intimate Partner Violence


Selected Publications

  • Dichter, M.E. (2023). Addressing intimate partner violence in healthcare: Implications for the inpatient setting. J Hosp Med, 18(8), pp. 771-772. United States. doi: 10.1002/jhm.13175

  • Makaroun, L.K., Rosland, A., Mor, M.K., Zhang, H., Lovelace, E., Rosen, T., Dichter, M.E., & Thorpe, C.T. (2023). Frailty predicts referral for elder abuse evaluation in a nationwide healthcare system-Results from a case-control study. J Am Geriatr Soc, 71(6), pp. 1724-1734. United States. doi: 10.1111/jgs.18245

  • Makaroun, L.K., Thorpe, C.T., Mor, M.K., Zhang, H., Lovelace, E., Rosen, T., Dichter, M.E., & Rosland, A. (2022). Medical and Social Factors Associated With Referral for Elder Abuse Services in a National Health Care System. J Gerontol a Biol Sci Med Sci, 77(8), pp. 1706-1714. United States. doi: 10.1093/gerona/glab354

  • Dichter, M.E., Chhatre, S., Hoffmire, C., Bellamy, S., Montgomery, A.E., & McCoy, I. (2022). Variation in call volume to the Veterans Crisis Line by women and men veterans prior to and following onset of the COVID-19 pandemic. J Psychiatr Res, 151, pp. 561-563. England. doi: 10.1016/j.jpsychires.2022.05.037

  • Dichter, M.E., Chatterjee, A., Protasiuk, E., & Newman, B.S. (2022). "I'd Go from a Mountain Top and Tell My Story": Perspectives of Survivors of Intimate Partner Violence on Storytelling for Social Change. Violence Against Women, 28(6-7), pp. 1708-1720. United States. doi: 10.1177/10778012211024267

  • Ogden, S.N., Dichter, M.E., & Bazzi, A.R. (2022). Intimate partner violence as a predictor of substance use outcomes among women: A systematic review. Addict Behav, 127, p. 107214. England. doi: 10.1016/j.addbeh.2021.107214

  • Tuepker, A., Newell, S., Sorrentino, A., Cusack, M., True, G., & Dichter, M.E. (2022). High-Risk Encounters: Primary Care Experiences of Women Living with Intimate Partner Violence, and Implications for the Patient Centered Medical Home. Journal of Aggression Maltreatment & Trauma, pp. 1-14. doi: 10.1080/10926771.2022.2038755

  • Ketchum, K. & Dichter, M.E. (2022). Evaluation of a Pilot Intimate Partner Violence Screening Program in a Veterans Health Administration HIV Clinic. Journal of Aggression Maltreatment & Trauma, pp. 1-10. doi: 10.1080/10926771.2022.2038754

  • Miller, C.J., Stolzmann, K., Dichter, M.E., Adjognon, O.L., Brady, J.E., Portnoy, G.A., Gerber, M.R., Iqbal, S., & Iverson, K.M. (2022). Intimate Partner Violence Screening for Women in the Veterans Health Administration: Temporal Trends from the Early Years of Implementation 2014-2020. Journal of Aggression Maltreatment & Trauma, pp. 1-19. doi: 10.1080/10926771.2021.2019160

  • Iverson, K.M., Danitz, S.B., Driscoll, M., Vogt, D., Hamilton, A.B., Gerber, M.R., Stirman, S.W., Shayani, D.R., Suvak, M.K., & Dichter, M.E. (2022). Recovering from intimate partner violence through Strengths and Empowerment (RISE): Development, pilot testing, and refinement of a patient-centered brief counseling intervention for women. Psychol Serv, 19(Suppl 2), pp. 102-112. United States. doi: 10.1037/ser0000544

  • Dichter, M.E., Krishnamurti, L.S., Chhatre, S., Hoffmire, C.A., Monteith, L.L., Bellamy, S.L., Iverson, K.M., Montgomery, A.E., Agha, A., & McCoy, I. (2022). Gender differences in veterans' use of the Veterans Crisis Line (VCL): Findings from VCL call data. Gen Hosp Psychiatry, 74, pp. 65-70. United States. doi: 10.1016/j.genhosppsych.2021.12.006

  • Dichter, M.E., Iverson, K.M., Montgomery, A.E., & Sorrentino, A. (2021). Clinical Response to Positive Screens for Intimate Partner Violence in the Veterans Health Administration: Findings from Review of Medical Records. Journal of Aggression Maltreatment & Trauma, pp. 1-17. doi: 10.1080/10926771.2021.2013380

  • Dichter, M.E., Ogden, S.N., Tuepker, A., Iverson, K.M., & True, G. (2021). Survivors' Input on Health Care-Connected Services for Intimate Partner Violence. J Womens Health (Larchmt), 30(12), pp. 1744-1750. United States. doi: 10.1089/jwh.2020.8585

  • Iverson, K.M., Danitz, S.B., Shayani, D.R., Vogt, D., Stirman, S.W., Hamilton, A.B., Mahoney, C.T., Gerber, M.R., & Dichter, M.E. (2021). Recovering From Intimate Partner Violence Through Strengths and Empowerment: Findings From a Randomized Clinical Trial. J Clin Psychiatry, 83(1). United States. doi: 10.4088/JCP.21m14041

  • Sorrentino, A.E., Iverson, K.M., Tuepker, A., True, G., Cusack, M., Newell, S., & Dichter, M.E. (2021). Mental health care in the context of intimate partner violence: Survivor perspectives. Psychol Serv, 18(4), pp. 512-522. United States. doi: 10.1037/ser0000427

  • Creech, S.K., Pulverman, C.S., Kroll-Desrosiers, A., Kinney, R., Dichter, M.E., & Mattocks, K. (2021). Intimate Partner Violence Among Pregnant Veterans: Prevalence, Associated Mental Health Conditions, and Health Care Utilization. J Gen Intern Med, 36(10), pp. 2982-2988. United States. doi: 10.1007/s11606-020-06498-3

  • Grillo, A.R., Danitz, S.B., Dichter, M.E., Driscoll, M.A., Gerber, M.R., Hamilton, A.B., Wiltsey-Stirman, S., & Iverson, K.M. (2021). Strides Toward Recovery From Intimate Partner Violence: Elucidating Patient-Centered Outcomes to Optimize a Brief Counseling Intervention for Women. J Interpers Violence, 36(15-16), pp. NP8431-NP8453. United States. doi: 10.1177/0886260519840408

  • Nadler, L.E., Ogden, S.N., Scheffey, K.L., Cronholm, P.F., & Dichter, M.E. (2021). Provider Practices and Perspectives regarding Collection and Documentation of Gender Identity. J Homosex, 68(6), pp. 901-913. United States. doi: 10.1080/00918369.2019.1667162

  • Makaroun, L.K., Thorpe, C.T., Mor, M.K., Zhang, H., Lovelace, E., Rosen, A.E., Dichter, M.E., & Rosland, A. (2021). Characteristics Associated with Receiving Social Work Services for Elder Abuse in a National Cohort of Older Veterans. JOURNAL of the AMERICAN GERIATRICS SOCIETY, 69, pp. S184-S185. Retrieved from

  • Denneson, L.M., Hoffmire, C.A., Blosnich, J.R., Dichter, M.E., Fitelson, E., Holliday, R., Monteith, L.L., Smolenski, D.J., & Yano, E.M. (2021). Advancing Knowledge of Suicide Risk and Prevention Among Women: Introduction to the Supplement. Med Care, 59, pp. S1-S3. United States. doi: 10.1097/MLR.0000000000001483

  • Montgomery, A.E., Dichter, M.E., & Blosnich, J.R. (2021). Gender Differences in the Predictors of Suicide-related Morbidity Among Veterans Reporting Current Housing Instability. Med Care, 59, pp. S36-S41. United States. doi: 10.1097/MLR.0000000000001422

  • Hoffmire, C.A., Denneson, L.M., Monteith, L.L., Dichter, M.E., Gradus, J.L., Cappelletti, M.M., Brenner, L.A., & Yano, E.M. (2021). Accelerating Research on Suicide Risk and Prevention in Women Veterans Through Research-Operations Partnerships. Med Care, 59, pp. S11-S16. United States. doi: 10.1097/MLR.0000000000001432

  • Adjognon, O.L., Brady, J.E., Gerber, M.R., Dichter, M.E., Grillo, A.R., Hamilton, A.B., Stirman, S.W., & Iverson, K.M. (2021). Getting Routine Intimate Partner Violence Screening Right: Implementation Strategies Used in Veterans Health Administration (VHA) Primary Care. J Am Board Fam Med, 34(2), pp. 346-356. United States. doi: 10.3122/jabfm.2021.02.200311

  • Miller, C.J., Adjognon, O.L., Brady, J.E., Dichter, M.E., & Iverson, K.M. (2021). Screening for intimate partner violence in healthcare settings: An implementation-oriented systematic review. Implementation Research and Practice, 2, p. 26334895211039894. doi: 10.1177/26334895211039894

  • Blosnich, J.R., Garfin, D.R., Maguen, S., Vogt, D., Dichter, M.E., Hoffmire, C.A., Bernhard, P.A., & Schneiderman, A. (2021). Differences in childhood adversity, suicidal ideation, and suicide attempt among veterans and nonveterans. Am Psychol, 76(2), pp. 284-299. United States. doi: 10.1037/amp0000755

  • Blosnich, J.R., Montgomery, A.E., Taylor, L.D., & Dichter, M.E. (2020). Adverse social factors and all-cause mortality among male and female patients receiving care in the Veterans Health Administration. Prev Med, 141, p. 106272. United States. doi: 10.1016/j.ypmed.2020.106272

  • Montgomery, A.E., Byrne, T.H., Cusack, M.C., Chhabra, M., Sorrentino, A.E., Dichter, M.E., & True, G. (2020). Patients’ perspectives on elements of stable housing and threats to housing stability. Journal of the Society for Social Work and Research, 11(4), pp. 545-567. doi: 10.1086/712238

  • Montgomery, A.E., Dichter, M., Byrne, T., & Blosnich, J. (2020). Intervention to address homelessness and all-cause and suicide mortality among unstably housed US Veterans, 2012-2016. J Epidemiol Community Health. England. doi: 10.1136/jech-2020-214664

  • Blosnich, J.R., Dichter, M.E., Gurewich, D., Montgomery, A.E., Kressin, N.R., Lee, R., Hester, C.M., & Hausmann, L.R.M. (2020). Health Services Research and Social Determinants of Health in the Nation's Largest Integrated Health Care System: Steps and Leaps in the Veterans Health Administration. Mil Med, 185(9-10), pp. e1353-e1356. England. doi: 10.1093/milmed/usaa067

  • Dichter, M.E., Makaroun, L., Tuepker, A., True, G., Montgomery, A.E., & Iverson, K. (2020). Middle-aged Women's Experiences of Intimate Partner Violence Screening and Disclosure: "It's a private matter. It's an embarrassing situation." J Gen Intern Med, 35(9), pp. 2655-2661. United States. doi: 10.1007/s11606-020-05947-3

  • Davis, C.I., Montgomery, A.E., Dichter, M.E., Taylor, L.D., & Blosnich, J.R. (2020). Social determinants and emergency department utilization: Findings from the Veterans Health Administration. Am J Emerg Med, 38(9), pp. 1904-1909. United States. doi: 10.1016/j.ajem.2020.05.078

  • Cusack, M., Montgomery, A.E., Cashy, J., Dichter, M., Byrne, T., & Blosnich, J.R. (2020). Examining veteran housing instability and mortality by homicide, suicide, and unintentional injury. Journal of Social Distress and the Homeless, 30(2), pp. 1-7. doi: 10.1080/10530789.2020.1801020

  • Blosnich, J.R., Montgomery, A.E., Dichter, M.E., Gordon, A.J., Kavalieratos, D., Taylor, L., Ketterer, B., & Bossarte, R.M. (2020). Social Determinants and Military Veterans' Suicide Ideation and Attempt: a Cross-sectional Analysis of Electronic Health Record Data. J Gen Intern Med, 35(6), pp. 1759-1767. United States. doi: 10.1007/s11606-019-05447-z

  • Iverson, K.M., Dichter, M.E., Stolzmann, K., Adjognon, O.L., Lew, R.A., Bruce, L.E., Gerber, M.R., Portnoy, G.A., & Miller, C.J. (2020). Assessing the Veterans Health Administration's response to intimate partner violence among women: protocol for a randomized hybrid type 2 implementation-effectiveness trial. Implement Sci, 15(1), p. 29. England. doi: 10.1186/s13012-020-0969-0

  • Makaroun, L.K., Rosen, T., Lovelace, E., Zhang, H., Mor, M., Dichter, M., Rosland, A., & Thorpe, C. (2020). Sociodemographic and Health Differences of a National Cohort of Older Veterans Receiving Social Work Services for Elder Abuse. JOURNAL of the AMERICAN GERIATRICS SOCIETY, 68, pp. S65-S65. Retrieved from

  • Makaroun, L.K., Brignone, E., Rosland, A., & Dichter, M.E. (2020). Association of Health Conditions and Health Service Utilization With Intimate Partner Violence Identified via Routine Screening Among Middle-Aged and Older Women. JAMA Netw Open, 3(4), p. e203138. United States. doi: 10.1001/jamanetworkopen.2020.3138

  • Cusack, M., Montgomery, A.E., Sorrentino, A.E., Dichter, M.E., Chhabra, M., & True, G. (2020). Journey to Home: development of a conceptual model to describe Veterans' experiences with resolving housing instability. Housing Studies, 35(2), pp. 310-332. doi: 10.1080/02673037.2019.1598551

  • Ogden, S.N., Scheffey, K.L., Blosnich, J.R., & Dichter, M.E. (2020). "Do I feel safe revealing this information to you?": Patient perspectives on disclosing sexual orientation and gender identity in healthcare. J Am Coll Health, 68(6), pp. 617-623. United States. doi: 10.1080/07448481.2019.1583663

  • Yu, B., Montgomery, A.E., True, G., Cusack, M., Sorrentino, A., Chhabra, M., & Dichter, M.E. (2020). The intersection of interpersonal violence and housing instability: Perspectives from women veterans. Am J Orthopsychiatry, 90(1), pp. 63-69. United States. doi: 10.1037/ort0000379

  • Dichter, M.E., Ogden, S.N., Clyatt, K.J., & Roberts, C.B. (2020). Missed Opportunity for HIV Prevention Among a High-Risk Population of Women Experiencing Intimate Partner Violence. J Gen Intern Med, 35(1), pp. 392-393. United States. doi: 10.1007/s11606-019-05372-1

  • Dichter, M.E. & Ogden, S.N. (2019). The Challenges Presented Around Collection of Patient Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity Information For Reduction of Health Disparities. Med Care, 57(12), pp. 945-948. United States. doi: 10.1097/MLR.0000000000001219

  • Danitz, S.B., Stirman, S.W., Grillo, A.R., Dichter, M.E., Driscoll, M., Gerber, M.R., Gregor, K., Hamilton, A.B., & Iverson, K.M. (2019). When user-centered design meets implementation science: integrating provider perspectives in the development of an intimate partner violence intervention for women treated in the United States' largest integrated healthcare system. BMC Womens Health, 19(1), p. 145. England. doi: 10.1186/s12905-019-0837-8

  • Iverson, K.M., Adjognon, O., Grillo, A.R., Dichter, M.E., Gutner, C.A., Hamilton, A.B., Stirman, S.W., & Gerber, M.R. (2019). Intimate Partner Violence Screening Programs in the Veterans Health Administration: Informing Scale-up of Successful Practices. J Gen Intern Med, 34(11), pp. 2435-2442. United States. doi: 10.1007/s11606-019-05240-y

  • Carter, S.P., Montgomery, A.E., Henderson, E.R., Ketterer, B., Dichter, M., Gordon, A.J., Shipherd, J.C., Kauth, M.R., & Blosnich, J.R. (2019). Housing Instability Characteristics Among Transgender Veterans Cared for in the Veterans Health Administration, 2013-2016. Am J Public Health, 109(10), pp. 1413-1418. United States. doi: 10.2105/AJPH.2019.305219

  • Chhabra, M., Sorrentino, A.E., Cusack, M., Dichter, M.E., Montgomery, A.E., & True, G. (2019). Screening for Housing Instability: Providers' Reflections on Addressing a Social Determinant of Health. J Gen Intern Med, 34(7), pp. 1213-1219. United States. doi: 10.1007/s11606-019-04895-x

  • Scheffey, K.L., Ogden, S.N., & Dichter, M.E. (2019). "The Idea of Categorizing Makes Me Feel Uncomfortable": University Student Perspectives on Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity Labeling in the Healthcare Setting. Arch Sex Behav, 48(5), pp. 1555-1562. United States. doi: 10.1007/s10508-019-1401-1

  • Tsai, C. & Dichter, M.E. (2019). The Trafficking of Children in the Greater Mekong Region: A Review of Recent Literature. Child Abuse Review, 28(3), pp. 198-208. doi: 10.1002/car.2562

  • Makaroun, L.K., Brignone, E., Rosland, A., & Dichter, M.E. (2019). Intimate Partner Violence in Middle-Aged and Older Women: Prevalence and Associated Health Conditions. JOURNAL of the AMERICAN GERIATRICS SOCIETY, 67, pp. S147-S147. Retrieved from

  • Iverson, K., Adjognon, O., Alessandra, G., Dichter, M., Gerber, M., Gutner, C., Hamilton, A., & Stirman, S.W. (2019). Getting intimate partner violence screening implementation right: Identifying best clinical practices, implementation strategies and contextual factors for success. IMPLEMENTATION SCIENCE, 14. Retrieved from

  • Cusack, M., Montgomery, A.E., Hunt-Johnson, N., Dichter, M., & True, G. (2019). Making Connections: Understanding How Screening, Triage, and Referral Processes Can Promote Veteran Housing Stability. Soc Work Public Health, 34(6), pp. 483-491. United States. doi: 10.1080/19371918.2019.1629143

  • Dichter, M.E., Sorrentino, A.E., Haywood, T.N., Tuepker, A., Newell, S., Cusack, M., & True, G. (2019). Women's Participation in Research on Intimate Partner Violence: Findings on Recruitment, Retention, and Participants' Experiences. Womens Health Issues, 29(5), pp. 440-446. United States. doi: 10.1016/j.whi.2019.03.007

  • Rhodes, K.V., Dichter, M.E., & Smith, K.L. (2018). Challenges and Opportunities for Studying Routine Screening for Abuse. JAMA, 320(16), pp. 1645-1647. United States. doi: 10.1001/jama.2018.14745

  • Dichter, M.E., Teitelman, A., Klusaritz, H., Maurer, D.M., Cronholm, P.F., & Doubeni, C.A. (2018). Trauma-Informed Care Training in Family Medicine Residency Programs Results From a CERA Survey. Fam Med, 50(8), pp. 617-622. United States. doi: 10.22454/FamMed.2018.505481

  • Dichter, M.E., Thomas, K.A., Crits-Christoph, P., Ogden, S.N., & Rhodes, K.V. (2018). Coercive Control in Intimate Partner Violence: Relationship with Women's Experience of Violence, Use of Violence, and Danger. Psychol Violence, 8(5), pp. 596-604. United States. doi: 10.1037/vio0000158

  • Dichter, M.E., Ogden, S.N., & Scheffey, K.L. (2018). Provider Perspectives on the Application of Patient Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity in Clinical Care: A Qualitative Study. J Gen Intern Med, 33(8), pp. 1359-1365. United States. doi: 10.1007/s11606-018-4489-4

  • Dardis, C.M., Dichter, M.E., & Iverson, K.M. (2018). Empowerment, PTSD and revictimization among women who have experienced intimate partner violence. Psychiatry Res, 266, pp. 103-110. Ireland. doi: 10.1016/j.psychres.2018.05.034

  • Cronholm, P.F. & Dichter, M.E. (2018). The Need for Systems of Care and a Trauma-Informed Approach to Intimate Partner Violence. Am Fam Physician, 97(11), p. Online. United States. Retrieved from

  • Dichter, M.E., Sorrentino, A.E., Haywood, T.N., Bellamy, S.L., Medvedeva, E., Roberts, C.B., & Iverson, K.M. (2018). Women's Healthcare Utilization Following Routine Screening for Past-Year Intimate Partner Violence in the Veterans Health Administration. J Gen Intern Med, 33(6), pp. 936-941. United States. doi: 10.1007/s11606-018-4321-1

  • Montgomery, A.E., Sorrentino, A.E., Cusack, M.C., Bellamy, S.L., Medvedeva, E., Roberts, C.B., & Dichter, M.E. (2018). Recent Intimate Partner Violence and Housing Instability Among Women Veterans. Am J Prev Med, 54(4), pp. 584-590. Netherlands. doi: 10.1016/j.amepre.2018.01.020

  • Iverson, K. & Dichter, M. (2018). Implementation and effectiveness of a secondary risk screener for intimate partner violence (IPV): evidence to inform IPV screening practices in integrated care settings. IMPLEMENTATION SCIENCE, 13. Retrieved from

  • Dichter, M.E., Wagner, C., & True, G. (2018). Women Veterans' Experiences of Intimate Partner Violence and Non-Partner Sexual Assault in the Context of Military Service: Implications for Supporting Women's Health and Well-Being. J Interpers Violence, 33(6), pp. 843-864. United States. doi: 10.1177/0886260516669166

  • Keddem, S., Frasso, R., Dichter, M., & Hanlon, A. (2018). The Association Between Pregnancy Intention and Breastfeeding. J Hum Lact, 34(1), pp. 97-105. United States. doi: 10.1177/0890334417725032

  • Brignone, E., Sorrentino, A.E., Roberts, C.B., & Dichter, M.E. (2018). Suicidal ideation and behaviors among women veterans with recent exposure to intimate partner violence. Gen Hosp Psychiatry, 55, pp. 60-64. United States. doi: 10.1016/j.genhosppsych.2018.10.006

  • Montgomery, A.E., Byrne, T.H., & Dichter, M.E. (2018). Unique considerations for homeless female veterans. In Homelessness among U.S. Veterans: Critical Perspectives (pp. 163-188). doi: 10.1093/oso/9780190695132.003.0008

  • Iverson, K.M., Sorrentino, A.E., Bellamy, S.L., Grillo, A.R., Haywood, T.N., Medvedeva, E., Roberts, C.B., & Dichter, M.E. (2018). Adoption, penetration, and effectiveness of a secondary risk screener for intimate partner violence: Evidence to inform screening practices in integrated care settings. Gen Hosp Psychiatry, 51, pp. 79-84. United States. doi: 10.1016/j.genhosppsych.2018.01.002