at 301 St Paul Pl, Baltimore, 21202 United States
The Mercy Medical Center Forensic Nursing Program is the designated Sexual Assault and Domestic Violence Center in Baltimore City.
The Mercy Medical Center Forensic Nursing Program is the designated sexual assault & domestic violence center for the City of Baltimore. Mercy has a team of 30+ specially trained Forensic Nurse Examiners (FNEs) available 24/7 to care for victims of sexual assault (aged 13 and older), domestic violence, elder/institutional and vulnerable populations’ abuse, neglect and maltreatment. Beginning in 2009, Mercy’s FNE Program began the “Jane Doe” or “Blind Reporting” Project. This project ensures that federal requirements are met and allows victims of sexual assault, male and female, to have the same excellent forensic medical care and evidence collection without reporting to law enforcement. All evidence and reports are maintained in a forensic locker on site for up to 16 months from the time of the examination. This allows the victim/patient precious time to regain decision-making capability and still have valuable evidence preserved when & if the victim decides to report to law enforcement. Traditionally, victims of sexual assault are seen in Emergency Departments by multiple health care providers resulting in an extended length of stay. In our program, victims are seen by a single, specially trained Forensic Nurse Examiner and experience a much shorter length of stay. Under an FNE's care, the average hospital stay is two to three hours, whereas length of stay was previously a minimum of six-eight hours. The FNE program works collaboratively with criminal justice agencies and other Baltimore agencies addressing the needs of victims of sexual violence. Victims of sexual assault are referred to the FNE Program by criminal justice agencies, Baltimore's Sexual Assault Center, Emergency Medical Services personnel, private physicians, and health care organizations. Victims may also enter the Emergency Department independently seeking treatment. The FNE provides expert witness testimony for the court system and appropriate referrals for victims of assault. Mercy's FNE Program also provides evidentiary exams at other hospitals in the Baltimore area for victims who are medically unstable for transport to Mercy. These exams are conducted upon request. Given the physical and emotional trauma of sexual assault, domestic crimes and other forms of interpersonal violence, victims benefit greatly from the comprehensive services provided by Mercy’s FNE Program. Emergency Department and FNE program services are provided to sexual assault victims FREE OF CHARGE when a forensic medical evidentiary exam is performed. Individuals not wishing to have evidence collected are seen solely by the Emergency Department staff and are billed in accordance with normal hospital procedure.
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