Primary healthcare centres, such as Klinik Kesihatans, are the most well-placed institution to reach domestic violence survivors, as survivors most frequently seek help from the healthcare system, and primary healthcare centres are survivors’ first point of contact with the system.
Yet, there is currently no systematic response mechanism to domestic violence at the primary healthcare level. Consequently, many survivors who seek care at primary healthcare centres do not receive adequate support.
In this brief, we outline four recommendations to strengthen Malaysia’s primary healthcare response to domestic violence:
- Display information on domestic violence in the waiting rooms and washrooms of Klinik Kesihatans and hospitals.
- Require healthcare providers to ask about domestic violence when patients have clinical conditions associated with domestic violence.
- Train healthcare providers to recognise, respond to, and refer cases of domestic violence.
- Establish a referral system for domestic violence at the primary healthcare.