Female genital mutilation: caring for patients and safeguarding children

British Medical Association
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Female genital mutilation is a collective term used for a range of practices involving the removal or alteration of parts of healthy female genitalia for non-therapeutic reasons; the age at which it is carried out varies from a few days old to just before marriage. It is against the law and the British Medical Association (BMA) supports the effective enforcement of the Female Genital Mutilation (England, Wales and Northern Ireland) Act 2003 and the Prohibition of Female Genital Mutilation (Scotland) Act 2005. This report sets out basic principles concerning female genital mutilation, together with definitions, prevalence, health risks, motivations, and regulation. It presents guidance for UK doctors from the BMA, covering child protection, risk factors, services for patients, support for the prevention and ending of the practice, sources of practical advice and information, and resources for health professionals. It includes a summary of key points for doctors from the Multi-Agency Practice Guidelines: Female Genital Mutilation, issued by the government in 2011.

Subject terms:
patients, women, child protection, doctors, female genital mutilation, girls;
Content type:
practice guidance
United Kingdom
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