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Attorney General Josh Stein Announces Sexual Assault Nurse Examiner Training for 50 North Carolina Nurses

For Immediate Release:
Thursday, April 7, 2022

Contact:
Nazneen Ahmed (919) 716-0060

(RALEIGH) Attorney General Josh Stein today announced a new program to train 50 North Carolina nurses to serve as Sexual Assault Nurse Examiners (SANEs) in hospitals across the state. SANE nurses help victims of sexual assault and collect evidence in the immediate aftermath of an incident, but North Carolina is facing a shortage of SANE nurses. The training program will be run by the Southern Regional Area Health Education Center.

“SANE nurses provide compassionate and expert medical care to people who have suffered a heinous crime,” said Attorney General Josh Stein. “They also collect evidence that is vital to law enforcement investigations. I’m pleased that this grant and partnership with the Southern Regional Area Health Education Center helps bring us closer to having trained SANE nurses in every hospital in North Carolina. These 50 SANE nurses will advance the cause of justice on behalf of victims and survivors of assault.”

“The NC AHEC program is aware of the critical need to increase the workforce for SANE nurses across the state, especially in the rural areas of south-central North Carolina that Southern Regional AHEC serves,” said Sheree Hayes, Administrator for Continuing Professional Development at Southern Regional AHEC. “This program is in partnership with the Eastern AHEC, NC Department of Justice, and NCSAKI to offer a comprehensive training curriculum and best practices needed to extend the resources available for victims of sexual assault within our local hospitals.”

Sexual Assault Nurse Examiners are critical to the victim healing process and to law enforcement investigations. They are trained to approach victims with compassion, take steps to avoid re-traumatization, connect victims with the resources they need to help process and recover from trauma and violence. SANE nurses examine people and collect physical and forensic evidence, identify and treat injuries, and provide medications to treat sexually transmitted infections and prevent pregnancies. They may also be called on to testify in court.

NCDOJ was awarded a federal grant from the Sexual Assault Kit Initiative to fund the training program. Nurses from hospitals across North Carolina applied to the program, with 50 nurses being selected to participate. The course begins in March and will run through August and will include:

  • A 40-hour online training course through the International Association of Forensic Nurses.
  • An eight-hour North Carolina Board of Nursing-approved virtual training on North Carolina practices related to sexual assault investigations and crime lab processes.
  • Sixteen hours of onsite clinical training to take place in Fayetteville, Greenville, Elon, and Asheville.

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