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National Conference on "Health Systems response to Violence Against Women: Emerging Evidence"

“National Conference on Health Systems Response to Violence Against Women: Emerging Evidence” on 3 rd December, at Indian Habitat Centre organised by CEHAT (Centre for Enquiry into Health and Allied Themes) and ICRW (International Center for Research on Women) in the context of 16 day activism beginning on 25 th of November i.e. International Day for the Elimination  of Violence against Women. Gender equality and prevention of violence against women is an important determinant of  men’s empowerment. SDGs 5 and 6 recognise the wide spread impact of such violence and emphasise the role of health systems in responding to violence against women. The health sector has a critical role in addressing violence and this also stems from the fact that health services and health care providers are the first and trusted point of contact. Since the advent of PWDVA 2005, POCSCO 2012 and CLA 2013 efforts by the health sector on responding to VAW are underway in different states. CEHAT has been working with different states in India to develop, replicate and adapt the Dilaasa model of health sector response to VAW.  This has led to replication of Dilaasa models and generation of evidence on several aspects (health consequences, facility prevalence, signs and symptoms of violence amongst others). It is important to present this evidence and foster a dialogue across states to learn from collective experiences and strategies. This event seeks the involvement of the key delegates from health departments of various states, presentation of their work with respect to addressing violence against women. The conference will feature the presentations on the learnings by various states on the implementation of health sector response to VAW. This is crucial with regards to the directive to the health sector to address gender based violence by the National Health Policy, 2017. Further, our engagement with the health sector on developing a comprehensive response to VAW, experiences of designing and implementing crisis intervention services with a feminist perspective and interface with the legal frameworks has prompted us to systematically research our service records as well as carry out empirical studies on different aspects of

The event was graced by the eminent speakers which include the government officials, representatives from civil society organisations and researchers from the health sector. 

The first session will be Addressing gender inequalities: Engendering Medical education in Maharashtra, an intervention project by CEHAT in seven medical colleges of Maharashtra on integrating gender in medical education. The second session on strengthening service delivery for VAW and generate evidence for policy development will focus on lessons learnt from implementing health sector models in different states and findings from an intervention study based in a hospital. The third and fourth session will be on assessing health systems response to VAW within legal framework and multi-sectoral response to VAW- principles & strategies to respond to VAW respectively.