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IMA to create awareness about anti-child abuse laws

IMA to create awareness about anti-child abuse laws

Thiruvananthapuram: In the wake of increasing instances of child sexual abuse, Indian Medical Association has drawn up a programme to create awareness among its members and parent-teacher community about various anti-child abuse laws.

The programme, which has already been launched at the national and state level among doctors, will soon be expanded to educational institutions through awareness drives among the members of parent teacher associations.

Presently the drive is focused on gynaecologists, pediatricians and forensic experts, and doctors of all streams will be brought under the programme in the next phase, IMA office bearers here said.

Five workshops at the national level and two workshops at the state level have been conducted for doctors in this regard and more are planned, they said.

A senior IMA official said doctors should have a thorough knowledge about various child abuse prevention laws including Protection of Children against Sexual Offences Act as they are the first contact persons in such cases.

"If a doctor fails to record the evidences as per protocol, the case will not stand at the court and the victims will not get deserved justice," IMA Kerala secretary A V Jayakrishnan told PTI.

"But, if the doctor is completely aware about the laws and other protocols he or she has to follow in such cases, the victims’ rights will be protected," he said.

He said as part of expansion of the drive, awareness will be created among parents and teachers through parent-teacher associations in schools.

As part of the programme, the IMA state officials recently had a discussion with the state Child Rights Commission and decided to go together to create awareness about child rights among people.

The doctor also said the reported cases of child abuse are on the rise in the state.

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