UK Prevalence

Inductiveload. (2008) UK Outline.(creative commons license)Estimation of FGM figures in the UK has been notoriously difficult to measure due to reluctance of women to disclose this information, language barriers, and the potentially wrong assumption that the prevalence of FGM amongst a migrant population is the same as within their home country. With an increasing migrant population to the UK, it is important that reliable data is collected in order to guide the planning of a national strategy to eliminate the practice in the UK. This data would also help inform the NHS in providing target services to vulnerable groups.

The FORWARD study in 2007 attempted to provide more accurate UK estimates by identifying those countries which practice FGM with significant migration figures to England and Wales, and apply this data to the census data for England and Wales collected by the Office for National Statistics. This research did not include second generation women who were born in the UK and may have been subjected to this practice, and therefore is an underestimation of the prevalence. 22