Specialized Care for Sexual Abuse Patients Expanded in Oneida

Representatives from Oneida Health and Liberty Resources recently announced the launch of the 24/7 Sexual Assault Nurse Examiner (SANE) program at the emergency room in Oneida.

“Today marks an important day for local survivors of sexual assault,” said Jacqueline Dawe, chief nursing officer of Oneida Health. “Previously our emergency department’s sexual assault nurse examiner program was limited by the availability of the nurses who could provide this form of specialized care. Moving forward, we will be able to provide this valuable service to our patients 365 days a year, around the clock. We are grateful to Liberty Resources, Colgate University and Community Memorial Hospital for working together to strengthen and improve this form of specialized care to the patients we serve in our communities.”

About one in five women and one in 71 men in the U.S. will become victims of sexual assault in their lifetime. Of those survivors, 81% of women and 35% of men report significant short- or long-term impacts such as post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), according to the National Sexual Violence Resource Center.

Sexual assault nurse examiners are registered nurses who have completed intensive, specialized education, and clinical preparation in the medical forensic care of a patient who has experienced sexual abuse. SANE services include emergency contraception, trauma response, sexually transmitted infection testing and treatment, forensic medical care, and referral to further support services vital for evidence collection to identify and hold offenders accountable. Most important, however, is the survivor’s treatment and recovery.

“We welcome Oneida Health as our newest Liberty Resources SANE program partner site,” said Sara Haag, Liberty Resources divisional director. “The partners, team and I could not be more proud of the fact that we’re here today to let the community know that if a survivor calls the Liberty Resources Help Restore Hope Center domestic and sexual assault program’s hotline or walks in to one of these two hospitals in our county, Liberty Resources SANE can now respond to support hospitals with compassionate, trauma-informed, specialized patient care.”

The SANE program was launched in 2017 by Liberty Resources Help Restore Hope Center in collaboration with Colgate University and Community Memorial Hospital.

Photo: Health professionals during the launching of the Sexual Assault Nurse Examiner (SANE) program at Oneida Health’s emergency room. The program will provide services to sexual assault patients 365 days a year, around the clock.

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