Providing Best Practice Medical Forensic Examinations to Sexual Assault Victims: Development of a Practice Evaluation Tool

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Authors
Sands, Tara
Schoening, Anne
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2012-02-07 , 2012-02-07
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Emergency Room Nursing
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Introduction: The healthcare needs of a sexual assault victim are multifaceted. In order to provide adequate healthcare to sexual assault victims, institutions must be equipped with trained providers to ensure that best practice standards are met. The Sexual Assault Forensic Examination Practice Evaluation (SAFE-PE) was created to evaluate an institution's ability to provide a medical forensic examination that is in accordance with best practice guidelines. This tool may be particularly useful for institutions that treat victims of sexual assault, but do not employ Sexual Assault Nurse Examiners (SANEs).|Methods: An online survey was used to evaluate the SAFE-PE for content validity. The survey was sent to 330 SANE programs in the United States. Using Fehring's Diagnostic Content Validation model, respondents to the survey evaluated the degree to which each component of the SAFE-PE was characteristic of best practice in a sexual assault medical forensic exam.|Results: Two-hundred seventy individuals responded to the survey. Five items were removed from the SAFE-PE after evaluation of the survey results.|Discussion: The SAFE-PE may be used by emergency nurses to identify gaps in current practice within their institutions. Emergency nurses may use data obtained from the SAFE-PE to allocate the appropriate resources, educate staff nurses and institute policy changes to improve the care provided to sexual assault victims.
Introduction: The healthcare needs of a sexual assault victim are multifaceted. In order to provide adequate healthcare to sexual assault victims, institutions must be equipped with trained providers to ensure that best practice standards are met. The Sexual Assault Forensic Examination Practice Evaluation (SAFE-PE) was created to evaluate an institution’s ability to provide a medical forensic examination that is in accordance with best practice guidelines. This tool may be particularly useful for institutions that treat victims of sexual assault, but do not employ Sexual Assault Nurse Examiners (SANEs). Methods: An online survey was used to evaluate the SAFE-PE for content validity. The survey was sent to 330 SANE programs in the United States. Using Fehring’s Diagnostic Content Validation model, respondents to the survey evaluated the degree to which each component of the SAFE-PE was characteristic of best practice in a sexual assault medical forensic exam. Results: Two-hundred seventy individuals responded to the survey. Five items were removed from the SAFE-PE after evaluation of the survey results. Discussion: The SAFE-PE may be used by emergency nurses to identify gaps in current practice within their institutions. Emergency nurses may use data obtained from the SAFE-PE to allocate the appropriate resources, educate staff nurses and institute policy changes to improve the care provided to sexual assault victims.
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