Group urges hospitals to grant rape victims prompt medical attention

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By Ahmed Kaigama

Bauchi, Oct. 30, 2020 The Bauchi State Sexual and Gender Based Violence (SGBV) Case Management Committee has
urged hospitals to grant prompt medical attention to rape victims.

The Chairperson of the committee, Hajiya Fatima Abubakar, made the call in a monthly meeting organised by the
Attah Sisters Helping Hand Foundation (ASHHF), a Non-Governmental Organisation (NGO), on Friday in Bauchi.

She said that a rape victim required prompt attention by a trained health worker for medical examination to enable speedy prosecution of the perpetrators.

He added that “their acute health care needs are of primary concern at the early stage and should be assessed as soon as possible.

“In busy settings where several patients may be present simultaneously, such as hospital emergency departments, it will be necessary to sort out sexual violence cases and attend to them first.”

Mrs Esther Patrick from the state’s Ministry of Women Affairs, said that medical examination and forensic evidence collection of rape victims should be simultaneously carried out as soon as the case was reported.

She noted that “treating a victim of sexual assault with respect and compassion throughout the examination will aid her recovery.”

She called for synergy between the police and the Welfare Department of both Abubakar Tafawa Balewa University Teaching Hospital and the Specialist Hospital, Bauchi, for speedy examination of rape victims.

Patrick suggested that Town Hall meetings should be conducted to educate women and parents on the need to report cases to the appropriate authorities.

Mr Kingsley Yallin, a member of the ASHH Foundation, said that obtaining informed consent for the examination and release of information to third parties was a crucial component of service delivery.

“All findings must be documented carefully to help ensure that no important details are omitted; the use of a standard examination form is recommended,” he said.

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