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GPs urged to be aware of signs of abuse as domestic violence increases

Recent research has indicated that many women have experienced an escalation in violence and abuse during the COVID-19 pandemic. The RACGP recently released the updated 5th edition of Abuse and violence - Working with our patients in general practice (known as the White Book). The timely update provides evidence-based guidelines for health practitioners on caring for patients experiencing family and domestic abuse and violence. It includes new guidance and chapters, including on trauma informed care as it relates to domestic violence, perpetrators, child abuse, abuse of older people and other groups.

The PHN's Domestic & Family Violence Program has developed a Domestic Abuse and Violence (DFAV) GP Action Plan designed to enable clinicians to identify patients at immediate risk, plan, manage, record and refer via an exclusive primary care pathway for patient triage and support. The program has also supported the annual campaign 16 Days of Activism against Gender-Based Violence in posting a series of resources and links on the PHN facebook page.

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Safe and Healthy: Improving Primary Care’s Response to sexual abuse and child sexual assault

As part of the Commonwealth funded Family, Domestic and Sexual violence pilot initiative, the PHN will procure additional services to deliver an integrated model of support for victim-survivors of sexual violence and child sexual abuse (SV and CSA). These services will closely link to existing family and domestic violence services commissioned by the PHN and increase the capacity and capability of primary care to better care for victim-survivors. The scope of these services will be co-design ahead of the Request for Proposal (RFP) being released in November 2023.

Learn more about Safe and Healthy: Improving Primary Care’s Response to sexual abuse and child sexual assault