Hold Team Meetings . Monitor and Evaluate Your Efforts . Sustain Your SART . Know Your Team . Critical Issues
Health Care Providers
Exams can be performed in clinics, hospitals, community-based advocacy programs, and other settings. Most sexual assault nurse examiner programs are based in hospitals (75 percent) and are located in the emergency department; others are located in community settings, such as rape crisis centers or health clinics.21
Regardless of the setting, consider whether the current or proposed response includes timely, compassionate, victim-centered care that meets the health care needs of victims and the evidentiary needs of the criminal justice system. In New York, for example, St. Luke's Roosevelt Hospital's Crime Victims Treatment Center worked with the New York City Alliance Against Sexual Assault to train all first-year residents in the Department of Emergency Medicine.22
When designating a sexual assault exam site for your SART, consider whether23
- Forensic medical examiners are available to victims within 60 minutes.
- A program coordinator is needed to exercise administrative and clinical oversight.
- Quality medical care is provided to victims that includes screening, evaluation, and treatment.
- Services are in compliance with Emergency Medical Treatment and Active Labor Act requirements for patients presenting for emergency care (see Critical Issues: Emergency Medical Treatment and Active Labor Act in this toolkit).
- Protocols include quality assurance mechanisms for the collection and storage of evidence (see Critical Issues: Chain of Custody).
- Victims are notified of the availability of advocates.
- The exam facility is appropriately equipped, including showers that are accessible for individuals with disabilities.
- Protocols include procedures for safe discharge, medical transfers, followup care and referrals, replacement clothing, and transportation.
- Protocols include prophylaxis for sexually transmitted diseases, hepatitis B, and HIV.
- Protocols provide specific information to meet victims' reproductive health concerns.