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Experts want victims of child abuse rehabilitated

HYDERABAD, March 2: Medical experts from abroad and Pakistan have underscored the need for identification of victims of child abuse to ensure their rehabilitation, saying that a legal framework for regulating internet cafes is also necessary because they are promoting pornography and exposing the children to child abuse.

This was the consensus of the 13th National Paediatric Conference which got underway at a local hotel on Friday under the aegis of Pakistan Paediatric Association (PPA), Sindh chapter.

In the inaugural session, Professor Abdul Ghaffar Billoo from Aga Khan University delivered a lecture on the conference’s theme, “Investment in child health: a national priority”.

Prof Dr Ayesha Mehnaz of Lyari General Hospital – focal person of Child Rights and Abuse Committee (CRACK) of PPA Sindh chapter – discussed the issue of identification of child abuse victims and asked healthcare providers to observe extra care while identifying child abuse cases.

She said abuses are emotional, sexual, mental and physical ones and expressed concern over inattention by parents, compelling the children to run away from homes.

She emphasised the need for implementation of National Plan of Action Against Child Abuse that has been approved by the federal cabinet.

Principal of Regional Training Centre for Population Welfare, Peshawar, Dr Tufail Mohammad, PPA vice president and chairman of CRACK, shared analysis on “exposure of children to pornography” as well as PPA initiative for formation of hospital child protection committees (CHIC).

He said complicated abuse cases required help from advocates, psychiatrists and police that’s why doctors were being asked to observe extra care while examining child abuse cases.

Source: Dawn