It is mandatory for health care providers and the police to ensure that a P3 form is filled in for all cases of sexual violence.
Sexual violence as mentioned in my previous articles is a crime against the state. Hence need for service providers to ensure that the right persons are involved in the management of these cases. Management of sexual violence requires timely and accurate documentation using the PRC and P3 forms.
Management of sexual violence cases in Kenya:P3 form
Prior to the enactment of the sexual offenses Act, 2006, it’s only the medical doctors who were expected to undertake medical examination of the survivors of sexual violence in Kenya. This was one of the reasons why all cases of assault had to be reported to a Dr. Kamau, the only medical doctor in Nairobi, Kenya authorized by Government to fill in the Kenya police medical examination form (famously referred to as the P3 form).
Resulting gaps in management of cases of sexual violence in Kenya:
The results of this policy directive of having Dr. Kamau fill in all P3 forms for sexual violence were:
- People had to queue for several days at his office to be examined and have the P3 form filled in for them.
- Survivors of sexual violence would not get justice, since their wounds would heal before being documented on the P3 form
- Dr. Kamau had and in some cases still has to create time to fill in all P3 forms for sexual violence, in addition to presenting himself in court upon mention of the cases. This is a very tough situation as the Government assumes that Dr. Kamau will never miss reporting on duty for whatever reason
- Most health care workers would use this as a scapegoat of not undertaking medical examination of survivors of sexual violence, even when these occur away from Nairobi
- Most P3 forms will be filled in with scanty details, due to the large number of survivors of sexual violence, plus other assault cases waiting to be attended to by Dr. Kamau. This then made the cases very weak due to lack of sufficient documented evidence
- Most survivors of sexual violence still miss out on emergency prophylactic treatment due to the delays experienced while waiting for the medical doctor
- Double trauma on the survivors of sexual violence
Which health care workers can testify on sexual violence/assault cases in Kenya?
However, there have been gains made. The recently revised national guidelines on the management of sexual violence provide for the following:
- Any medical doctor, clinical officer or nurse can examine a survivor of sexual violence
- Any of these health care workers are permitted to fill in the P3 form and PRC form
It is therefore hoped that the sexual offences implementation taskforce will ensure that all policy frameworks governing delivery of services to survivors of sexual violence including use of P3 and PRC forms are well articulated.