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SANE Nurses at Texas Health Kaufman Provide Critical Care to Assault Victims
12/02/2013

KAUFMAN, Texas — A sexual assault occurs every two minutes in the U.S. According to the Department of Justice, only half are reported to law enforcement. At Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital Kaufman, specially trained nurses known as Sexual Assault Nurse Examiners (SANE) are on-call 24 hours a day, seven days a week to ensure that victims of sexual assault are cared for in a secure, healing environment.

SANE nurses work closely with the Kaufman County Sheriff’s office and Children’s Advocacy Center
SANE nurses work closely with the Kaufman County Sheriff’s office and Children’s Advocacy Center. Pictured are SANE nurses Heather Watson and Darla Hammer, with Jolie Stewart and Shannon Gardner from Kaufman County.

While the SANE program has been available to the Kaufman community for a few years, additional space has now been dedicated at Texas Health Kaufman, where sexual assault victims can be treated in a quiet, private room to complete all aspects of treatment.

“We’ve created a place where victims of sexual assault can feel safe, whether they are children or adults,” said Darla Hammer, R.N., SANE certified nurse at Texas Health Kaufman. “That is extremely important after a traumatic event.”

The room offers a sitting area, exam space and a private restroom.

SANE nurses are trained to conduct exams, collect court-admissible evidence and provide courtroom testimony. A Department of Justice study found a 95 percent increase in successful prosecution of cases where evidence was collected by a SANE certified nurse.

“First and foremost, I am there to get the healing process started for the patient,” said Heather Watson, R.N., SANE certified nurse at Texas Health Kaufman. “In addition to evidence collection, we are there to provide needed medical care to the patient.”

About Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital Kaufman
Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital Kaufman is a 91-bed acute-care, full-service medical center serving Kaufman and Henderson counties and the southern part of Dallas County since 1979. The hospital's services include women’s services, wound care, diagnostic imaging, cardiac rehabilitation and pain management services. Texas Health Kaufman, an affiliate of the faith-based, nonprofit Texas Health Resources system, was recently recognized with the Pathway to Excellence hospital designation for distinction in nursing by the American Nurses Credentialing Center and is a Level IV Trauma Center. For more information, call 1-877-THR-WELL, or visit TexasHealth.org/Kaufman.

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