Sexual Assault Survivor Victims Need to Receive Medical Care
Where to go if you or your child has been sexually assaulted
- Call 911 or go directly to the nearest emergency department
- Call the SART 24/7 line 715-425-6443 and one of our Forensic RN’s will meet you at the SART center or at one of our Care Partner Hospitals — it is your choice.
- Pediatric exams, unless medically necessary, will be performed at the SART Center.
The immediate response, or Acute Phase, can last anywhere from a few days to a few weeks after an assault. The survivor victim is responding to a complete disruption of life and the horrific experience of being sexually assaulted.
Medical concerns may arise as well. These concerns may be the direct result of the assault (bruising, soreness) or fear of getting a sexually transmitted infection or pregnancy concerns. For these reasons and many others, seeking medical attention right away at one of our locations is important.
What to do if you have been assaulted
Even if you are not sure about what happened or don’t want to report the assault crime to the police, we recommend the following:
- Get to a safe place
- Know that what has happened to you is not your fault
- Seek immediate attention by calling 911 or go to the nearest emergency department
- Don’t bathe, change your clothes or even brush your teeth—even if you don’t think you want to report to police
- Try not to urinate; if you have to, do so in a container
- If you change your clothes, don’t wash them and bring them with you in a bag
- Even if you know you don’t want to report to the police, it is good to get medical attention for pregnancy concerns and STI prevention
Why we ask you not to bathe or go to the bathroom
Bathing may remove valuable evidence that can be collected just in case you choose to report the crime to the police. Evidence may also be collected from clothing. Going to the bathroom also removes evidence from your body. It is always your choice to report to the police.
Financial Assistance After Evidence Collection
Financial assistance is available to survivor victims of sexual assault from the WI Crime Victims Compensation Fund. A Forensic Exam that includes evidence collection is required for you to qualify for financial assistance. Our Client Services Coordinator will help you with all the paperwork and any questions you may have after your exam.