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Health Programs Should Address Gender Violence

Noting the potential “devastating and lasting” health impacts of physical and sexual violence on women and girls, Scott Radloff, director of USAID’s Office of Population and Reproductive Health, writes in USAID’s “IMPACTblog,” “The health sector can play a vital role in preventing gender-based violence by helping to identify abuse early, providing victims with the necessary treatment, and referring women to appropriate and informed care.” He continues, “USAID supports stand-alone activities as well as programs that integrate anti-gender violence activities and messages into broader health efforts.” “By addressing gender violence, health programs can enhance their effectiveness, enable women who have experienced violence to benefit from existing programs, and prevent the escalation of such violence,” Radloff writes, concluding, “In turn women and their families are able to contribute more to their communities and nations” (3/6).