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The National Council for Women (NCW) and UNFPA concluded Women’s Month by inaugurating a medical response clinic at the Assiut University Hospital on March 31, offering comprehensive services for women subjected to violence, with the support of Norway.

The Assiut clinic brings the number of medical response clinics to four, following the inauguration of the medical response units in Ain Shams University, Qasr al-Ainy hospital and Mansoura university late last year.

“Around 7.8 million of women suffer from violence annually, and less than 1% of this number report, obtain service or receive support,” Germaine Haddad, UNFPA Assistant Representative in Egypt, stated in her address during the virtual event. “Therefore, establishing medical response units for survivors of violence has become a necessity and a major goal of UNFPA in Egypt.”

Dr. Maya Morsy, President of NCW, indicated that women are more comfortable dealing with a doctor who knows how to better address the violence she had been subjected to, and is capable of offering medical and psychological support.

Tarek El-Husseiny, Dean of Faculty of Medicine, Assiut University, pointed out the importance of ending all forms of violence against women and the role of the unit in supporting women who’ve been subjected to physical or verbal violence.

The clinics offer response services to women subjected to violence, as well as the national referral process for all existing medical, legal and social services available. 

Since 2018, UNFPA coordinated the Essential Services Package (ESP) joint program in Egypt in collaboration with 11 relevant ministries and key UN agencies. The objective of this joint program is to provide adapted guidelines on enhanced coordinated services for women and girls subjected to violence, in the legal, social and medical sectors.

NCW officially adopted the referral pathway developed under the ESP joint program in November 2019, marking the establishment of the first national process to develop and ensure the quality and efficiency of services for women and girls subjected to violence.