Gender violence is a human rights violation and a serious public health problem that should be addressed with an inter-sector and interdisciplinary focus. Collaboration and coordination between sectors, including the health sector, is essential for guaranteeing such approach. The study aimed to learn which actors address gender violence in the communities and to study the communities’ opinions concerning the public health system’s role in (and approach to) this problem. A qualitative action-research project was conducted with local community self-diagnosis workshops, using various qualitative techniques and thematic analysis. The results pointed to various local actors that address the problem and showed that primary healthcare plays a relevant role, due mainly to its proximity to the population and interdisciplinary approach. The obstacles identified by the communities for the health system approach mainly involved the biomedical model of care, decentralization, and lack of resources, training, and integrated policies. In conclusion, the workshops facilitated the development of collective knowledge on the local reality, underlining the role of primary healthcare and the need to link action and approaches between sectors and communities.
Violence Against Women; Gender-Based Violence; Hospitals; Primary Health Care; Qualitative Research