A recent survey of 199 clinicians in the Northwest Region revealed that 55% had encountered a torture survivor in their NHS practice; most lacked confidence in how to help these patients.
Medact, Asylum Welcome Oxford and Forrest Medico-Legal Services have partnered to organise a special teaching session to train interested doctors, nurses and counsellors in methods of documenting, in a a very limited way, clinical evidence of human rights abuses previously suffered by the detainees they are visiting.
This documentation would not take the form of full Medico-Legal Reports (MLR) which are compliant with the Istanbul Protocol. But even a short letter can sometimes assist detainees in achieving release and beginning to establish their case for international protection. Moreover, such documentation is very useful to lawyers in seeking an MLR if indicated.
If time allows, the training will also cover entitlement and barriers to NHS care.
The training is free of charge for members of Medact or Asylum Welcome.