Female Genital Cutting: Clinical knowledge, Attitudes, and Practices from a Provider survey in the US

Jessica L. Lane, Crista E. Johnson-Agbakwu, Nicole Warren, Chakra Budhathoki, Eugene C. Cole

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

Migration from countries where female genital cutting (FGC) is practiced means women’s healthcare providers need to meet this population’s unique healthcare needs. We explored providers’ FGC-related experience, knowledge of the cultural practice, prior training, attitudes towards medicalization, including reinfibulation, and clinical practice. An online, 53-question survey to a multidisciplinary sample of women’s health providers in the US were recruited by email via professional organizations, medical departments, and the authors’ professional networks. From a total of 508 usable surveys, nearly half of respondents did not receive formal FGC training, but a majority had cared for FGC-affected women in their practice. A ‘know-do’ gap existed with managing infibulated patients; and surgical defibulation procedures were not routinely offered. Most respondents (79%, n = 402) reported a desire for additional education. Women’s healthcare providers in the US, regardless of disciplinary backgrounds, are inadequately prepared to meet the needs of FGC-affected women. To address these, FGC content needs to be embedded in educational and training curricula, and ongoing clinical mentorship made available.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)954-964
Number of pages11
JournalJournal of Immigrant and Minority Health
Volume21
Issue number5
DOIs
StatePublished - Oct 1 2019

Keywords

  • Defibulation
  • Female genital cutting
  • Healthcare professional training
  • Medicalization
  • Reinfibulation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Epidemiology
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health

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