Profile of Medicolegal Cases in the Rural Areas of District Bahawalpur
Objectives: To study the paradigm of medicolegal cases at the rural health care facilities for the purpose of evaluation and future collaboration between various departments in rural area. Study Design: Cross Sectional Study. Settings & Duration: The study was carried out in the Office of District Medicolegal Officer Bahawalpur. Data was collected from Tehsil Headquarter Hospitals (THQs) & Rural Health Centers (RHCs) covering a span of one year from 1st January, 2017 to 31st December, 2017. Methodology: Total 3709 medicolegal cases were included in this study. After perusal of injury statement, police docket & brief history reflected in medicolegal certificates; the observations were recorded in predesigned proforma with special emphasis on patterns of medicolegal cases. Results: Of the total 3709 cases; 2688 (72%) were male and 1021 (28%) were females. As regard age distribution is concerned, 297(7.9%) persons were less than 10 years while 1250(33.7%) belonged to 10-25 years, 1221(33%) were of 26-40 years, 640(17.3%) of 41-60 years whereas the age group of more than 60 years involved 301(8.1%) persons. The pattern of medicolegal cases included 250(7%) cases of sexual assault, 100(3%) cases of poisoning, 56(2%) cases of firearms, 2058(55%) cases of trauma by blunt weapons and 1054(28%) were the victims of sharp-edged weapon whereas road traffic accidents (RTAs) involved 183(5%) cases. Stratification with regard to age, gender and health care facility was carried out. Conclusion: Medicolegal cases caused by blunt and sharp-edged weapon were most commonly observed in rural areas of district Bahawalpur. The cases of poisoning & unnatural sexual act with males were having serious prevalence in rural areas. True implementation of the existing laws as well as collaboration of Health, Social welfare and Agriculture Department with law enforcing agencies is urgently required to reduce the potentiality of the crimes especially in rural areas.