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Parliamentary debates and questions

S5W-13620: Annie Wells (Glasgow)

Scottish Conservative and Unionist Party

Date lodged: 21 December 2017

To ask the Scottish Government how many female victims of sexual assault were examined by male doctors in (a) 2014-15, (b) 2015-16 and (c) 2016-17.

Answered by: Michael Matheson 16 January 2018

The information requested is not held centrally by the Scottish Government.

In December 2017 Healthcare Improvement Scotland, commissioned by the Scottish Government, published the first Healthcare and Forensic Medical Services Standards for people who have experienced rape, sexual assault or child sexual abuse. These standards will ensure consistency in approach and high-quality care across Scotland.

Standard 2 is focused on NHS boards providing person centred and trauma informed care – this includes providing people with the opportunity to request the gender of the forensic examiner who will be involved in their care.

The standards can be accessed here: http://www.healthcareimprovementscotland.org/our_work/personcentred_care/resources/sexual_assault_services.aspx .

The Scottish Government has established a Taskforce for the improvement of services for adults and children who have experienced rape and sexual assault, chaired by the Chief Medical Officer for Scotland. As set out in the Taskforce’s five year work plan, key priorities include increasing the number of (particularly female) forensic physicians who are able to carry out this work, as well as on ensuring consistent, national data collection (Standard 5 of the national standards). The Taskforce’s 5 year work plan can be accessed here: https://beta.gov.scot/publications/rape-and-sexual-assault-victims-taskforce-high-level-work-plan/High%20Level%20Work%20Plan.pdf?inline=true 

The Scottish Government will provide £250k in 2017-18 and £2.0m in 2018-19 to support Health Boards to embed the new standards and support delivery of the work plan.