Liz Westcott talks to Dr John Joyce about his experiences with victims of torture
- By: Elizabeth Westcott
When I enter the building I expect to see grossly disfigured bodies lining the corridors. Instead I am greeted by smiling faces and children's colourful paintings hanging on the walls. There is a sense of peace.
I am introduced to Dr John Joyce, who welcomes me into his consulting room. Throughout the interview, he speaks keenly and expressively about his work at the Medical Foundation for the Care of Survivors of Torture.
He tells me about one torture victim who he examined. The man had distinctive burn marks on his chest, made by an oldfashioned iron. “They heated it up and stuck it on me,” the man said.
Dr Joyce sees several new cases like this each day. Each one has been referred by the person's solicitor or GP. In most cases the referral is for a medical report for a claim to verify the torture. Dr Joyce writes the