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LETTER TO THE EDITOR
Year : 2021  |  Volume : 34  |  Issue : 1  |  Page : 406-407

Strengthening the response of the health sector to improve the quality of life of women exposed to violence


1 Member of the Medical Education Unit and Institute Research Council, Department of Community Medicine, Shri Sathya Sai Medical College and Research Institute, Sri Balaji Vidyapeeth – Deemed to be University, Ammapettai, Nellikuppam, Chengalpet District, Tamil Nadu, India
2 Department of Community Medicine, Shri Sathya Sai Medical College and Research Institute, Sri Balaji Vidyapeeth – Deemed to be University, Ammapettai, Nellikuppam, Chengalpet District, Tamil Nadu, India

Date of Submission23-Aug-2019
Date of Decision30-Aug-2019
Date of Acceptance09-Sep-2019
Date of Web Publication27-Mar-2021

Correspondence Address:
Saurabh R Shrivastava
Department of Community Medicine, Shri Sathya Sai Medical College and Research Institute, Sri Balaji Vidyapeeth (SBV) – Deemed to be University, Tiruporur - Guduvancherry Main Road, Ammapettai, Nellikuppam, Chengalpet District - 603 108, Tamil Nadu
India
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None


DOI: 10.4103/mmj.mmj_266_19

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How to cite this article:
Shrivastava SR, Shrivastava PS. Strengthening the response of the health sector to improve the quality of life of women exposed to violence. Menoufia Med J 2021;34:406-7

How to cite this URL:
Shrivastava SR, Shrivastava PS. Strengthening the response of the health sector to improve the quality of life of women exposed to violence. Menoufia Med J [serial online] 2021 [cited 2021 May 8];34:406-7. Available from: http://www.mmj.eg.net/text.asp?2021/34/1/406/312043



Violence against women is a major, yet preventable public health concern that is extremely common across the globe [1]. In fact, it is quite alarming that almost 35% of women have been exposed to at least one such incidence in their lifetime, often by their intimate partners [1],[2]. Definitive evidence is available to suggest that violence tends to cast a negative and a long-term effect on the health and well-being of the women, including their reproductive and mental health [1],[2],[3],[4]. Acknowledging the scope of the problem and the associated long-term sequelae, it is high time that we have a planned approach toward the problem [3].

The first and foremost thing is to create awareness about the availability of the health system's response to the female victims [2]. The health sector has the potential to not only identify the victims (while they avail healthcare for any other illness) but also to provide them with the desired care and help them to avail support of other sectors, if needed [1],[2]. The role of health sector becomes quite important as the occurrence of such events in the family can even affect the physical and mental health of the children, and there are no doubts that even they can be the perpetrators in the future, having witnessed similar things in their childhood [1],[2],[3].

This has to be supported by the strong political will to ensure that there occurs a transformation in the health system in terms of the delivery of services [2]. In fact, performing a situational analysis has to be done first and based on the obtained findings an action plan should be developed [2],[4]. To improve the delivery of services, protocols, or standard operating procedures have to be formulated, and this should also include the preparedness of the health sector to deliver the desired care [2]. However, we have to develop a better coordination and referral services within the health system [2],[4]. At the same time, measures have to be taken to strengthen the health workforce by training them to support the victims and also offering mentoring while they are dealing with the women [1],[4].

Furthermore, actions have to be taken to strengthen the infrastructure and logistics (namely medicines, equipments, etc.) supply so that health facilities are well equipped to respond to the incidents of violence against women [1],[2]. In addition, there is a great need to review, strengthen and implement appropriate policies to support the legal framework [2],[3]. Furthermore, the governance structure has to be established, and all measures should be taken to maintain sex equality in the workplace [2]. Moreover, the overall success of the program depends on the financial support, and simultaneous actions have to be taken to minimize the financial barriers to healthcare access [1],[2],[3]. In addition, steps have to be taken to enhance the coordination between different sectors, including referral services and also to encourage community engagement [1],[2].

In conclusion, women exposed to incidents of violence need extensive support, especially from the health sector. Thus, it is the need of the hour to ensure that comprehensive services are available to them.

Acknowledgements

S.R.S. contributed in the conception or design of the work, drafting of the work, approval of the final version of the manuscript, and agreed for all aspects of the work; P.S.S. contributed in the literature review, revision of the manuscript for important intellectual content, approval of the final version of the manuscript, and agreed for all aspects of the work.

Financial support and sponsorship

Nil.

Conflicts of interest

There are no conflicts of interest.



 
  References Top

1.
Shrivastava SR, Shrivastava PS, Ramasamy J. Aiming to target gender barriers for improving the health and welfare standards of girls. Ann Trop Med Public Health 2017; 10:527–528.  Back to cited text no. 1
    
2.
Ferrer-Pérez VA, Bosch-Fiol E, Sánchez-Prada A, Delgado-Álvarez C. Beliefs and attitudes about intimate partner violence against women in Spain. Psicothema 2019; 31:38–45.  Back to cited text no. 2
    
3.
World Health Organization. Strengthening health systems to respond to women subjected to intimate partner violence or sexual violence: a manual for health managers. Geneva: WHO Press; 2017. pp. 1–24.  Back to cited text no. 3
    
4.
Shrivastava SR, Shrivastava PS, Ramasamy J. Extending humanitarian assistance to the survivors of gender-based violence in Ukraine. Prim Health Care 2016; 6:e117.  Back to cited text no. 4
    




 

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