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Abuse, violence against GPs becomes a very serious issue

07 October, 2008

The Royal Australian College of General Practitioners (RACGP) is launching its third edition of Abuse and violence: working with our patients in general practice, previously published as the Women and violence manual.

The publication has been designed to guide general practitioners and practice teams in the identification and management of women, men and children who are survivors of abuse and violence, or who are currently involved in abusive situations.

This new edition will be launched on Saturday, 4 October during the Wonca Asia Pacific Regional Conference/ RACGP Annual Scientific Convention 2008 in Melbourne and will be available through the RACGP website at approximately two weeks after the conference.

“Abuse and violence is a serious issue and GPs deal with the effects of abuse and violence every day,” said Dr Chris Mitchell, RACGP President and GP in Northern NSW.

“Even though abuse and violence has serious effects on patients’ health and wellbeing, finding the right way to communicate about these issues is complex for both GPs and their patients.

“This guide provides GPs with useful tips on how to gain their patient’s trust and to intervene, where appropriate, in a positive and empowering manner. This is important when dealing with patients suffering past or present abuse,” said Dr Mitchell.

The guide addresses general practice presentations and management of intimate partner abuse (domestic violence), perpetrators of intimate violence, child abuse, adult survivors of child abuse, sexual assault and elder abuse.

This third edition of Abuse and violence: Working with our patients in general practice has been funded by the RACGP and produced with the generosity of the many contributors who gave freely of their time:

Dr Elizabeth Hindmarsh (medical editor) and Dr Gwenneth Roberts (medical editor), Dr John Litt, Dr Ronald McCoy, Dr Vanita Parekh, Dr Kelsey Hegarty, Dr Angela Taft, Dr Denise Ruth, Dr Norma Jean Duncan, Dr Jill Benson and Ms Kerry Haarsma.

The Royal Australian College of General Practitioners (RACGP) is responsible for maintaining standards for quality clinical practice, education and training, and research in Australian general practice. The RACGP has the largest general practitioner membership of any medical organisation in Australia and represents the majority of Australia's general practitioners. Visit