'All GPs need training on domestic violence'

All GPs need to be trained in handling cases of domestic violence, according to an RCGP clinical champion.

Dr Sohal: GPs need face-to-face training to handle cases of domestic violence
Dr Sohal: GPs need face-to-face training to handle cases of domestic violence

Dr Alex Sohal, joint clinical champion for domestic violence with Professor Gene Feder, was speaking as the RCGP launched a new e-learning module on the subject written by Oxford GP Dr Fiona Duxbury. She said the issue was so important in primary care that GPs and their teams would also need face-to-face training.

‘All GPs need to be trained in this area. Domestic violence is an issue for the whole practice team, which needs to consider practical issues, such as how to record related data, regular practice meetings to discuss cases and building links to local specialised services.

‘E-learning is not a substitute for face-to-face expert training. Whole practice training on domestic violence and safeguarding children is recommended at least every three years for all NHS staff,’ Dr Sohal explained.

Dr Sohal said a quarter of women experienced physical or sexual violence in their lifetime.

‘GPs should get involved because domestic violence is an important public health and clinical issue due to its high prevalence, health impact and hidden aetiological role in many common conditions seen in primary care.’

Dr Sohal said she had experienced a spectrum of responses from practices on the importance of the issue.

‘This ranges from GPs who are very interested in domestic violence, seeing it as a significant issue that impacts on the health of their patients, to GPs who insist that it is not a problem at their practice, even when experiences at adjacent practices contradict this view,’ she said.

The RCGP online course takes GPs through a series of exercises in recognising violence, sensitive ways of broaching the subject, and the different options available for addressing these cases.

Click here for all the latest news from the RCGP Conference

GP Online recommends

RCGP Online Resource Centre

Read more

Have you registered with us yet?

Register now to enjoy more articles and free email bulletins


Already registered?

Sign in

Follow Us:

Just published

£20 notes spread out

VAT trap for PCNs could strip millions of pounds from general practice

Tens of millions of pounds could be stripped from general practice because work carried...

Talking General Practice logo

Podcast: Is the BMA representing GPs effectively, why GPs face a pension tax hit, and views on the workload crisis

In our regular news review the team discusses representation of GPs, a new survey...

Man sleeping

NICE guidance on insomnia backs app to replace sleeping pills

Hundreds of thousands of people with insomnia could be offered treatment via a mobile...

Health worker prepares a dose of COVID-19 vaccine

JCVI backs autumn COVID-19 booster campaign for high-risk adults and NHS staff

Frontline health and social care staff and adults at increased risk of severe illness...

GP consultation

Government accused of 'misleading' claims on general practice workforce

GP leaders have accused the government of making misleading claims about the general...

Consulting room door

LMC calls for enhanced access to be scrapped after abuse forces practice to close reception

A Midlands LMC has backed a practice forced to close its reception desk after abuse...