Symposium for action plan on sexual, gender-based violence

MANIPAL: The Centre for clinical and innovative forensics, Kasturba Medical College, Manipal, in collaboration with Doctors Without Borders/ (Médecins Sans Frontières), New Delhi, will organise a two-day national level symposium on Sexual and Gender-Based Violence (SGBV) at the medical college from December 10.
This symposium is a part of ongoing efforts by the host organizations to support research, clinical care, and policy advocacy in advancing better medical care for survivors of SGBV. It brings together senior medical faculty (Forensic Medicine, Gynecology, Pediatrics, Psychiatry, and Public Health), researchers, legal advocates, and women’s rights activists involved in care for survivors of SGBV from across India. Noting that only about 2 percent of women survivors of SGBV seek medical help (NFHS V)[1], this symposium aims to discuss healthcare access barriers and lay out an action plan to influence policy change in the practice of organizing and providing comprehensive care to survivors.
The partnering organizations also emphasize the need for medical professionals and legal advocates to delve into issues around access barriers to comprehensive care (health, legal and social) and work with a common-frame towards the welfare of survivors, as the provision of medical care to survivors of SGBV is intertwined with legal processes.
“In India, the provision of medical care, processes of legal recourse, and rehabilitation has considerably evolved in the direction of better welfare of survivors/victims. The present times provide us with significant evidence and experience to act upon and cover enormous systemic gaps in providing person-centered care (health, legal and social) to survivors of SGBV,” says Dr. Vinod Nayak, Professor of Forensic Medicine, KMC, Manipal and Dr Himanshu M., Medical Co-ordinator, Doctors Without Borders, India.
Reducing SGBV is a driver for progress and aims towards fulfilling the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. The expected outcome of this medical symposium will be to inquire into the evidence gap regarding medical repercussions and to work towards establishing survivor centric model of care across the country.
“KMC, Manipal has always been at the forefront when it comes to community service and this symposium will go a long way in helping sexual violence survivors get comprehensive care” says Dr Sharath Rao, Dean, KMC, Manipal.
Top researchers and medical faculty from renowned institutions like the All India Institute of Medical Sciences, New Delhi and CMC, Vellore would be participating along with legal luminaries from the Supreme court of India and renowned activists from across the country.