During the WAVE Conference 2018, Diana Dulf, Assistant Professor at Babes-Bolyai University, Department of Public Health and coordinator of the RESPONSE Project co-hosted the WAVE Workshop “The pivotal role of the health care sector in addressing and preventing violence against women and girls” along with Professor Hector Pagan, from University of Tartu, Estonia, the coordinator of another co-funded Daphne Program: WHOSEFVA Project – Addressing the Abuse of Older Women via (Healthcare) Policy. Dr. Dulf presented the importance of the multi-agency response for reporting of gender-based violence (GBV) in women’s health settings. GBV against women is a major public health concern, yet health professionals lack mandatory training on how to identify and refer victims of violence. Additionally, health professionals are not linked to existing specialised services for GBV survivors, thus, they are not fully aware of the existing services that could be recommended to women. One conclusion from the workshop was that training on GBV should be compulsory for all health professionals in Europe so that healthcare treats GBV a health issue and part of their every day job as health care professionals. Some ideas that were discussed:
- including GBV into medical schools curricula as independent course or part of existing courses;
- improving communication skills/motivational interviewing of health care professionals;
- develop a standardised registry for GBV to encourage data collection by health care professionals;
- implementing basic skills to guide health professionals for identifying and referring victims of violence to existing specialized services; and
- ensuring patient confidentiality and privacy to create a safe space in hospitals for disclosing.
More information about the project can be found on our project website. Additionally, you can access the conference presentation here: WAVE 2018 Presentation