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SANE - Sexual Assault Nurse Examiners

If you are a victim of sexual assault and need help now, call 9-1-1.

At Deaconess, we see and understand the devastating effects of sexual assault. That’s why our emergency departments at Deaconess Midtown Hospital and Deaconess Gateway Hospital have Sexual Assault Nurse Examiners (SANE) on staff and available 24/7. 

The SANE nurses are highly-skilled and expertly trained to care for victims in a compassionate manner while also following legal rules for collecting and preserving evidence. 

If you experienced any of the following, we encourage you to be evaluated by a medical professional:
  • Rape
  • Attempted rape
  • Being forced to perform sexual acts such as oral sex 
At Deaconess, a trained SANE will provide the following to any and all victims of sexual violence regardless of age, gender, race, ethnicity, religious preference, sexual orientation or gender identity. 
  • Medical care and treatment 
  • Evidence collection 
  • Injury identification and documentation
  • Necessary preventive medication
  • Safety planning
  • Support group referrals
How long can you wait to come in?
Evidence can be collected within 96 hours (4 days) following an assault on victims 14 and older and within 120 hours (5 days) for victims 13 and younger.  

Do the police have to know?
Victims who are 18 or older may choose whether they report to law enforcement. 
We are required to tell the police about sexual assault of a child age 17 and under.
Evidence can still be collected regardless of whether a report is made or not.

Do I just show up at the emergency room? 
Yes. To receive sexual assault services at Deaconess, walk in to the emergency department at Deaconess Midtown Hospital or Deaconess Gateway Hospital at any time of the day or night. Tell the person at the check-in desk you want to see a SANE nurse. We’ll take it from there. 
 
Do I change my clothes? Bring my clothes with me? Take a shower first? 
It will be difficult, but try to avoid these activities before coming to the emergency room:
  • Bathing
  • Showering
  • Using the restroom
  • Changing clothes
  • Combing hair
  • Cleaning up the area
If you already took a shower or changed clothes, it’s okay. You can still have an exam. Put the clothes you were wearing (including socks and shoes), jewelry, watch, etc., in a paper bag and bring it with you to the emergency room. This helps preserve evidence. (A brown paper bag is best, but use whatever you have to bring in your clothes and personal items.)

You may want to bring a clean change of clothes with you to the hospital.

Do the nurses involve other service providers or organizations?
Yes. Deaconess SANE providers have a close relationship with Albion Fellows Bacon Center and Holly’s House. These local organizations work directly with the victim to address personal, financial and legal needs that may occur after leaving the hospital.  We also connect you with any additional medical resources that may be appropriate such as STD or HIV/AIDS services.

Resources:

Holly’s House – non-residential victim advocacy center located in Evansville

Albion Fellows Bacon Center – victim advocacy and shelter located in Evansville

Matthew 25 – HIV/AIDS services

Vanderburgh County Health Department – HIV/STD clinic

RAINN – National sexual assault hotline. Free. Confidential. 24/7 1-800-656-HOPE (4673) for live chat or more information

Sexual Assault Information - This article details what happens during a sexual assault exam and what you can do before arriving at the emergency room to help preserve evidence.
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