Since 2010, the SANE (Sexual Assault Nurse Examiner) program – now known as FNE (Forensic Nurse Examiner Program) – at St. Anthony Summit Medical Center has provided forensic exams and care for survivors of sexual assault 24/7/365. The program was renamed in 2015 to more accurately reflect the expertise and training received by the nurses who now conduct medical- forensic exams on victims of sexual assault, child abuse, child sexual assault, elder abuse, strangulation, non- accidental trauma and domestic violence. Our program coordinator and 10 specially trained FNE nurses are available to provide medical forensic exams for patients who have experienced sexual assault and domestic violence.
A survivor of sexual assault or domestic violence experiences one of the most painful, confusing and frightening events that can happen to a person. The FNE nurses provide the special care needed, beginning in the Emergency Department with the forensic exam and then continuing with support, compassion and advocacy as the patient navigates the healing process.
The FNE program at St. Anthony Summit Medical Center serves the 5th Judicial District, which includes Summit, Clear Creek, Eagle and Lake counties; Park County; and the 9th Judicial District, which includes Pitkin, Rio Blanco and Garfield counties. More information about a new program that will also be able to serve victims from the 9th Judicial District is available here.
Each year, our program provides education to many law enforcement agencies as well as area middle and high schools, and assists with the training of new advocates. Police officers and Advocates for Victims of Assault direct patients to the Emergency Department at St. Anthony Summit Medical Center for their FNE exams and care. The FNE nurses are also available to do exams for children who have been physically or sexually abused.
We continue to have a list of needs not met from within our facility. One of the ongoing needs is funding for supplies, training and salaries for nurses for the FNE Program located in the hospital Emergency Department. Hundreds of cases occur each year within the 5th and the 9th Judicial Districts. Without the program based at St. Anthony Summit Medical Center, victims from both the 5th and 9th Judicial Districts would need to travel to Denver or Grand Junction to receive the exam, treatment and support services.
Anyone needing help or information regarding domestic violence or sexual abuse should call the hospital at 970-668-3300 and ask for a Forensic Nurse. Our office can be reached at 970- 668-6901 for any questions.