Intervention initiatives towards a unified guidelines in the issuance of psychiatric evaluation report

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Author: Vacante, Cheryl B.

Accession Number: 192AR

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Copyright Year: 2014

Abstract:

Western Visayas Medical Center of Psychiatry with the other government providers, the Philippine National Police, the Department of Social Welfare and Development, the Public Attorney's Office, and the Prosecutor's Office of the Province of Iloilo on cases of sexual violence against women and children. This study utilized a research-made Interview Guide composed of four (4) questions that ascertained the existence of guidelines in handling cases of sexual violence against women and children. These questions gathered information as to when the psychiatric evaluation report was required, what were the concerns in obtaining a copy of the report, and what were their suggestions or recommendations in improving the issuance of the report. The finding revealed that the service providers utilized the General Guidelines for Handling Forensic Cases, the Republic Acts 9262 & 7610, the Manual of Operation of the Regional Center for Women, the Article V of the Codes and the References for the Public Attorney's Office. They also used the psychiatric evaluation report for cases filed in court. However, other service providers found the Medico-legal examination report enough to be used in filling cases. The Psychiatric Evaluation Report is only released upon the order of the court. Thus, in procuring a copy of the Psychiatric Evaluation Report, the service providers experienced some problems since the issuing agency will not release the report because of confidentiality issues despite the written request from other agency's chief or the family of the victim, unless there is court order. Likewise, it was found to be illogical and difficult to understand the necessity of the court order since no case has yet been filed in court; thus, the court has no jurisdiction to order the release of the report. On the other hand,in order to improve the quality of service, the respondents suggested that the clients may personally access their own personal Psychiatric Evaluation Report and the releasing agency should improve the time element in the issuance thereof. There was also a suggestion that the report may be released to the personnel manning the Women and Children's Desk if there is a written request from the Chief of Police or a waiver from the victim especially if that victim is over 18 years old and has mental disability, since the document will aggravate the offense filed against the offender. Another recommendation was to make the report more comprehensive and easy to understand terms should be used. In view of the foregoing, intervention activities such as Effective Group Discussion were employed that resulted to an improved guidelines in the issuance of psychiatric evaluation report. Another intervention activity was communicating it to the different service providers. By so doing, they were appreciative of the improved guidelines and are looking forward for an official correspondence to be cascaded to the different Women and Children Protection unit of the Province of Iloilo.


Keywords: Intervention initiatives, psychiatric evaluation report

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