Hospital Advocacy

At the Hospital

If you or someone you know has experienced sexual assault or rape, Safe Haven has trained Hospital Advocates that can come and support you through the SANE/SAFE process and exam that are available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.  Advocates can support victims, their families and loved ones through the SANE or SAFE exam as well as provide resources for those wishing additional services afterwards.

There are hospitals in the surrounding counties and in the city of Ashland that have 24-Hour SANE Units or SAFE Units – specially designated areas that provide quality medical care and forensic evidence collection for sexual assault patients.

They are staffed by SANE nurses (Sexual Assault Nurse Examiners), who are experienced RNs with intensive classroom education, extensive clinical experience, and expertise in sexual assault evaluation and forensic evidence collection. SAFE doctors (Sexual Assault Forensic Exam) work in conjunction with experienced nurses to collect forensic evidence and complete the exam. 

(Source: Cleveland Rape Crisis Center)

How Soon Should I Get A SAFE/SANE Exam?

It is recommended that individuals 15 years and younger have a forensic exam within 72 hours after an incident has occurred and individuals 16 years and older have an exam within 96 hours.  Anyone who has experienced sexual assault should refrain from:

  • Showering
  • Urinating
  • Brushing teeth
  • Smoking
  • Eating
  • Drinking
  • Changing clothing prior to the SANE/SAFE exam

Where Can I Get A SAFE/SANE Exam?

Check out our list of hospitals and emergency departments that offer SANE/SAFE exams in the area at our 24 Hour SANE/SAFE Exam page.