25 November is the International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women and the start of 16 Days of Activism against Gender Violence. WHO is marking this day with the launch of a new programming tool “16 ideas for addressing violence against women in the context of the HIV epidemic”. According to recent WHO estimates, 1 in 3 women, globally, will experience intimate partner violence or non-partner sexual violence in their lifetime. The global and regional prevalence estimates of intimate partner violence and non-partner sexual violence are now also available on the Global Health Observatory.
For the first time WHO is issuing recommendations, based on the available evidence, on the use of a screen and treat approach using visual inspection with acetic acid (VIA) for screening and treatment with cryotherapy, or when feasible HPV testing followed by treatment. These recommendations are published in the new WHO guidelines for screening and treatment of precancerous lesions for cervical cancer prevention.
WHO welcomes the Declaration of Commitment to End Sexual Violence in Conflict signed by 113 Member States attending the 68th UN General Assembly in New York. By signing the declaration, Member States pledged to end the use of rape and sexual violence as a weapon of war, which terrorizes communities during conflict and has very serious health consequences. The declaration sends an important message to the victims of these crimes that the international community has not forgotten them, and to the perpetrators of rape that they will be held to account.
WHO and partners programmes UNAIDS, UNFPA, UNICEF, UN Women, and the World Bank work together as the H4+ in a joint effort to improve the health of women and children and accelerate progress towards achieving Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) 4 (reducing child mortality) and 5 (improving maternal health). The H4+ serves as the lead technical partners for the United Nations Secretary-General's Global Strategy for Women’s and Children’s Health.