Violence against women is both a violation of women’s human rights and a major public health problem. World Health Organization research in ten countries around the world indicates that between 15% and 71% of women have experienced physical or sexual violence by an intimate partner. Worldwide, violence against women is a significant cause of injury and death, as well as a risk factor for many physical and psychological health problems; it also has serious negative economic and social costs, both for individual women and for society as a whole.
Given the serious consequences of violence against women, the United Nations has called on governments, international organizations and civil society to prevent and respond to violence against women through multi-sectoral efforts, based on a human rights framework. The Pan American Health Organization (PAHO) has a long history of working to address violence against women, as documented in publications such as Violence against women: the health sector responds. It is only fitting, therefore, that PAHO now joins efforts with the International Planned Parenthood Federation / Western Hemisphere Region to print the second edition of the publication Improving the Health Sector Response to Gender Based Violence: A Resource Manual for Health Care Professionals in Developing Countries. By reprinting this second edition, PAHO and IPPF/WHR hope to expand access to this important resource and thereby improve the health and wellbeing of women throughout the region.
This publication is available in CD-Rom format in both English and Spanish.