Tag Archives: Questionnaires

Predetermined sets of questions used to collect data – clinical data, social status, occupational group, etc. The term is often applied to a self-completed survey instrument.

Counselling professionals’ awareness and understanding of female genital mutilation/cutting: Training needs for working therapeutically with survivors.

FREECouns Psychother Res. 2017 Dec;17(4):309-319. doi: 10.1002/capr.12136. Epub 2017 Jul 20.

Counselling professionals’ awareness and understanding of female genital mutilation/cutting: Training needs for working therapeutically with survivors.

Jackson C


Background: There is a dearth of literature that has looked at the psychological  impact of female genital mutilation/cutting (FGM/C), and little is known about the understanding and awareness of FGM/C amongst counselling professionals. Method: An online survey was completed by 2073 BACP members. The survey covered four broad themes: demographics; awareness and understanding of FGM/C; experience of working therapeutically with survivors; and FGM/C training. Descriptive and inferential analyses were undertaken on quantitative data, and thematic content analysis was undertaken on qualitative data. Results: Only a small proportion of respondents (10%) had knowingly worked with survivors of FGM/C. Overall, respondents lacked confidence in their awareness and understanding of FGM/C, including their safeguarding duties. Having cultural respect, knowledge and understanding was perceived as the most helpful factor
when working with this client group. Less than a quarter of respondents had undertaken any training with regard to FGM/C, although the vast majority expressed a desire to do so. Discussion: This research has highlighted the importance of improving signposting to existing training and educational resources around FGM/C, as well as the need to develop new resources where appropriate. The importance of embedding cultural competency into core practitioner training, not just training specific to FGM/C, is paramount.

This article can be accessed in this LINK.

Factors associated with the support of pricking (female genital cutting type IV) among Somali immigrants – a cross-sectional study in Sweden

Reprod Health. 2017 Aug 8;14(1):92. doi: 10.1186/s12978-017-0351-0.FREE

Factors associated with the support of pricking (female genital cutting type IV) among Somali immigrants – a cross-sectional study in Sweden

Wahlberg A, Johnsdotter S, Ekholm Selling K, Källestål C, Essén B


BACKGROUND: Pricking, classified as female genital cutting (FGC) type IV by the World Health Organization, is an under-researched area gaining momentum among diaspora communities. Our aim was to explore factors associated with being supportive of pricking among Somalis in Sweden. METHODS: In a cross-sectional design, attitudes and knowledge regarding FGC, and measures of socioeconomic status, acculturation, and social capital, were assessed by a 49-item questionnaire in four municipalities in Sweden. Data were collected in 2015 from 648 Somali men and women, ≥ 18 years old, of which 113 supported the continuation of pricking. Logistic regression was used for the
analysis. RESULTS: Those more likely to support the continuation of pricking were older, originally from rural areas, and newly arrived in Sweden. Further, those who reported that they thought pricking was: acceptable, according to their religion (aOR: 10.59, 95% CI: 5.44-20.62); not a violation of children’s rights (aOR: 2.86, 95% CI: 1.46-5.61); and did not cause long-term health complications (aOR: 5.52, 95% CI: 2.25-13.52) had higher odds of supporting pricking. Religion was strongly associated with the support of pricking among both genders. However, for men, children’s rights and the definition of pricking as FGC or not were important aspects in how they viewed pricking, while, for women, health complications and respectability were important. CONCLUSIONS: Values known to be associated with FGC in general are also related to pricking. Hence, there seems to be a change in what types of FGC are supported rather than in their perceived values.

This article can be accessed in this LINK

Female Circumcision: Perceptions of Clients and Caregivers

Journal of American College Health,1985, 33(5), 193-197

Female Circumcision: Perceptions of Clients and Caregivers

Shaw E


Female circumcision is a custom which continues to be widespread in many parts of the word, yet very little is known about the practice by health care providers in the United States. Student health services in colleges and universities with large populations of international students need to be prepared to meet the health needs of this group of women. This paper discusses basic information about the practice of female circumcision. It summarizes data from a descriptive study conducted to identify specific needs and concerns of a group of 12 circumcised women who have used the western medical system while living in the United States. It also discusses the results of a follow-up study based on a questionnaire sent to 95 student health centers in the United States that had a foreign student population base of more than 500. Responses to the questionnaire identified the problems and concerns that student health providers encountered while caring for circumcised women. Suggestions for improved care are included from the perspective of both the client and the student health service personnel.

This article can be accessed in this LINK

Female genital mutilation in Sierra Leone: who are the decision makers?

Afr J Reprod Health. 2012 Dec;16(4):119-31.FREE

Female genital mutilation in Sierra Leone: who are the decision makers?

Bjälkander O, Leigh B, Harman G, Bergström S, Almroth L.

Division of Global Health, Department of Public Health, Karolinska Institute, Stockholm, Sweden. owolabi.bjalkander@ki.se


The objectives of this study were to identify decision makers for FGM and determine whether medicalization takes place in Sierra Leone. Structured interviews were conducted with 310 randomly selected girls between 10 and 20 years in Bombali and Port Loko Districts in Northern Sierra Leone. The average age of the girls in this sample was 14 years, 61% had undergone FGM at an average age of 7.7 years (range 1-18). Generally, decisions to perform FGM were made by women, but father was mentioned as the one who decided by 28% of the respondents. The traditional excisors (Soweis) performed 80% of all operations, health professionals 13%, and traditional birth attendants 6%. Men may play a more important role in the decision making process in relation to FGM than previously known. Authorities and health professionals’ associations need to consider how to prevent further medicalization of the practice.

This article can be accessed in this LINK.

Perception and practice of female genital cutting in a rural community in southern Nigeria.

Afr J Reprod Health. 2012 Dec;16(4):132-9.FREE

Perception and practice of female genital cutting in a rural community in southern Nigeria.

Johnson OE, Okon RD.

Department of Community Health, University of Uyo Teaching Hospital, Uyo, Nigeria. drjohnsonoe@yahoo.com


This study was carried out to determine the awareness and practice of FGC in a rural community in southern Nigeria. A cross sectional study was carried out among Ayadehe women in Itu, LGA Akwa Ibom State, Nigeria using a semi-structured interviewer administered questionnaire. Information obtained was analysed using SPSS version 17. A total of 218 respondents participated in the study. Majority, 215 (98.6%) were aware of the practice of FGC. Type 2 FGC was the commonest type reported by 71.2% of respondents. Prevalence of FGC was 92.7%. A total of 69.8% were circumcised at 6-12 years. Health complications experienced included excruciating pains, (36.6%), severe bleeding, (15.8%), and painful urination, (26.7%). Up to 53.5% were circumcised by traditional birth attendants. The belief that FGM should be discontinued increased with educational level. The practice of FGC was high in this community. Increased female education, community involvement and legislation are needed to reduce this practice.

This article can be accessed in this LINK.

Have we made progress in Somalia after 30 years of interventions? Attitudes toward female circumcision among people in the Hargeisa district.

BMC Res Notes. 2013 Mar 27;6(1):122. [Epub ahead of print]FREE

Have we made progress in Somalia after 30 years of interventions? Attitudes toward female circumcision among people in the Hargeisa district.

Gele AA, Bø BP, Sundby J.

BACKGROUND: Female circumcision is a major public health problem that largely contributes to the ill-health of women and their children globally. Accordingly, the international community is committed to take all possible measures to abolish the practice that is internationally considered to be absolutely intolerable. While the practice is a social tradition shared by people in 28 African countries, there is no country on earth where FC is more prevalent than in Somalia. Yet, since the early 1990s, there is no quantitative study that has investigated whether the perception towards the practice among Somali men and women in Somalia has improved or not. Thus, this cross-sectional quantitative study examines the attitudes toward the practice among people in Hargeisa, Somalia.

METHODS: A cross-sectional study of 215 randomly selected persons, including both men and women, was conducted in Hargeisa, Somalia from July to September of 2011. Participants were interviewed using structured questionnaires, with questions including the circumcision status of the female participants, the type of circumcision, if one has the intention to circumcise his/her daughter, whether one supports the continuation or discontinuation of the practice and men’s perceptions toward having an uncircumcised woman as a wife.Result: The findings show that 97% of the study’s participants were circumcised with no age differences. Of this, 81% were subjected to Type 3, while 16% were subjected to either Type 1 or 2 and only 3% were left uncircumcised. Approximately 85% of the respondents had intention to circumcise their daughters, with 13% were planning the most radical form. Among men, 96% preferred to marry circumcised women, whereas overall, 90% of respondents supported the continuation of the practice. The vast majority of the study’s respondents had a good knowledge of the negative health effects of female circumcision. In multivariate logistic regressions, with an adjustment for all other important variables, female circumcision (the Sunna form) is a religious requirement 16.5 (2.43-112.6) and the Sunna form is not harmful 25.1(2.35-281.1), are the two factors significantly associated with the continuation of female circumcision. Moreover, females were less likely to support the continuation of FC compared to their male counterparts (aOR 0.07; CI: 0.05-0.88).

CONCLUSION: The study shows that the support towards the persistence of the practice is profoundly high in Somalia. People are aware of the health and human rights effect of female circumcision, and yet they support the continuation of the practice. Therefore, over 30 years of campaigns with limited progress demand an alternative approach towards the eradication of female circumcision in Somalia.

This article can be accessed in this LINK

Coping and chronic psychosocial consequences of female genital mutilation in the Netherlands.

Ethn Health. 2012 Dec;17(6):677-95. doi: 10.1080/13557858.2013.771148.

Coping and chronic psychosocial consequences of female genital mutilation in the Netherlands.

Vloeberghs E, van der Kwaak A, Knipscheer J, van den Muijsenbergh M.

Research & Development Department , PHAROS – Knowledge and Advisory Centre on Refugees’ and Migrants’ Health , Utrecht , The Netherlands.

Objective. The study presented in this article explored psychosocial and relational problems of African immigrant women in the Netherlands who underwent female genital mutilation/cutting (FGM/C), the causes they attribute to these problems – in particular, their opinions about the relationship between these problems and their circumcision – and the way they cope with these health complaints. Design. This mixed-methods study used standardised questionnaires as well as in-depth interviews among a purposive sample of 66 women who had migrated from Somalia, Sudan, Eritrea, Ethiopia or Sierra Leone to the Netherlands. Data were collected by ethnically similar female interviewers; interviews were coded and analysed by two independent researchers. Results. One in six respondents suffered from post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), and one-third reported symptoms related to depression or anxiety. The negative feelings caused by FGM/C became more prominent during childbirth or when suffering from physical problems. Migration to the Netherlands led to a shift in how women perceive FGM, making them more aware of the negative consequences of FGM. Many women felt ashamed to be examined by a physician and avoided visiting doctors who did not conceal their astonishment about the FGM. Conclusion. FGM/C had a lifelong impact on the majority of the women participating in the study, causing chronic mental and psychosocial problems. Migration made women who underwent FGM/C more aware of their condition. Three types of women could be distinguished according to their coping style: the adaptives, the disempowered and the traumatised. Health care providers should become more aware of their problems and more sensitive in addressing them.

This article can be accessed in this LINK

The effectiveness of a community-based education program on abandoning female genital mutilation/cutting in Senegal.

Stud Fam Plann. 2009 Dec;40(4):307-18.

The effectiveness of a community-based education program on abandoning female genital mutilation/cutting in Senegal.

Diop NJ, Askew I.

Population Council, Senegal. nafissatoud@gmail.com


A pre- and post-test comparison-group design was used to evaluate the effect of a community education program on community members’willingness to abandon female genital mutilation/cutting (FGM/C) in rural areas of southern Senegal. Developed by TOSTAN (a Senegalese nongovernmental organization), the education program aimed to empower women through a broad range of educational and health-promoting activities. Our findings suggest that information from the program was diffused widely within the intervention villages, as indicated by improvements in knowledge about and critical attitudes toward FGM/C among women and men who had and had not participated in the program, without corresponding improvement in the comparison villages. The prevalence of FGM/C among daughters aged ten years and younger decreased significantly over time as reported by women who were directly and indirectly exposed to the program, but not among daughters in the comparison villages, suggesting that the program had an impact on family behaviors as well as attitudes. Findings from this study provide evidence-based information to program planners seeking to empower women and discourage a harmful traditional practice.

This article can be purchased in this LINK.

Women’s attitudes towards discontinuation of female genital mutilation in Egypt.

J Inj Violence Res. 2010 Jan;2(1):41-5. doi: 10.5249/jivr.v2i1.33.FREE

Women’s attitudes towards discontinuation of female genital mutilation in Egypt.

Dalal K, Lawoko S, Jansson B.

Linköpings Universitet, Department of Medical and Health Sciences, Centre for Medical Technology Assessment and Division of Social Medicine and Public Health Sciences, Linköping, Sweden. koustuv.dalal@liu.se

BACKGROUND: To examine women’s attitude towards discontinuation of female genital mutilation (FGM) in association with their access to information, knowledge of health effects and cultural beliefs concerning FGM in Egypt.

METHODS: A cross-sectional study of 9159 women, using data from the household survey in Egypt by Demographic and Health survey 2003. A comprehensive questionnaire covering attitudes towards FGM, demographics, and access to information was used. Chi-square analysis and logistic regression were applied to investigate how demographics, level of education, access to information, knowledge of health consequences and cultural beliefs influence women’s attitudes towards FGM.

RESULTS: Among the demographic variables, discontinuation of FGM was independently associated with urban residency and post-secondary education. Moreover, women who were informed by the media, and those who had attended community meetings, church, or mosque where FGM was discussed, as well as women who were aware of the negative health consequences of FGM, were more likely to support discontinuation of FGM. By contrast, women with positive cultural conceptions of FGM were less likely to favor its discontinuation.

CONCLUSIONS: Public education and information dissemination aiming to change current cultural notions favoring FGM practice – through community and religious leaders, and radio and television programs – may play an important role in modifying women’s attitudes towards FGM. These findings have some implications for intervention and policy. ‎

This article can be accessed for free in this LINK

[Female genital mutilation. Women’s point of view]

Gynecol Obstet Fertil. Nov 2001 29(11): 824–828

[Mutilations génitales rituelles féminines. La parole aux femmes] [Article in french]

[Female genital mutilation. Women’s point of view]

Allag F, Abboud P, Mansour G, Zanardi M, Quéreux C


Female genital mutilation (FGM) is considered as the most dangerous custom still ritually practised and 2 million girls undergo the ordeal each year. This practice is anchored and fixed firmly in numerous African people’s culture and Western countries are confronted to it through African immigrants. In order to understand the justifications and the consequences of FGM we interviewed 14 genitally mutilated African women living in France. Unfortunately and despite the conscious knowledge of consequences and absurd side of such practice, yet it seems to be perpetuated over the descendants. Educational approach is the best solution to fight female genital mutilation fixed firmly in numerous African people’s culture.

This article can be purchased in this LINK