Responding to gender-based violence during pregnancy

Recognising the effects of gender-based violence on pregnant women, offering early intervention and sustained support for women during pregnancy can reduce the risks of gender-based violence and improve outcomes for both mother and baby. Early intervention and support regarding gender-based violence is an aim of The Early Years Framework as a clear priority to provide tailored and supportive services that meet the needs of pregnant women and children.

Where a practitioner identifies that the baby’s emotional/and or physical well-being could be impacted due to gender-based violence, it will be necessary for the practitioner to assess the situation.   If the woman requires additional support, an appropriate referral should be made to the relevant agency.  Where a child is deemed to be at risk of harm due to gender based violence, the practitioner should follow existing child protection guidance in order that the level of risk can be assessed and any necessary action taken to ensure the child’s safety and well-being and to promote the mother’s health and wellbeing.

Ensure that any disclosure of abuse is documented in the woman’s notes. 



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