Kombis, Brothels, and Violence Against Women: Building Global Health Partnerships to Address Women’s Health and Empowerment
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This chapter is a perspective on the author’s year as a Fogarty global health and clinical research fellow in Peru. In a colorful rendition she walks us through the trials and tribulations of getting accustomed to life in Lima as a medical student. She describes her participation in public health interventions in collaboration with Peruvian clinician-investigators and her experiences getting to know a particularly marginalized community, female commercial sex workers. As she works with members of this community in a specialized clinic at a community health center, Dr. Khan’s observations of the conditions where they work and the daily violence these women experience spark an interest in gender-based violence and women’s empowerment. She describes the process of developing and carrying out a qualitative research study with this vulnerable population. While the study results are reported elsewhere, Dr. Khan elaborates on the process of carrying out a research project in an international setting, including lessons learned on building rapport, adhering to ethical principles and human subjects regulations, and safety considerations. She concludes the piece with a reflection on the potential for global partnerships to address social inequities such as gender-based violence.
KeywordsCommunity health Violence against women Global health Clinical research Women’s empowerment
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