Prisma Health forensic nurse team receives SAFE designation
COLUMBIA, SC (WOLO)–The Prisma health forensic nurse team received its S.A.F.E. designation today.
S.A.F.E., or Sexual Assault Forensic Excellence, is awarded to a South Carolina hospital or agency that completes sexual assault victim care training provided by the South Carolina Victim Assistance Network. The training includes evidence preservation and trauma informed care.
Gina Dyer-Goss, Forensic Nurse Coordinator for Prisma Health Richland Hospital, says the S.A.F.E. program provides a safe hospital for victims. “That can cover intimate partner violent assault, sexual assault, child sexual assault, a human trafficking victim, and even a non-fatal strangulation victim,” says Dyer-Goss.
The training is provided by the South Carolina Victim Assistance Network, also known as SCVAN, and is available to multiple other agencies like EMS and law enforcement as well.
Sabrina Gast, the statewide forensic nurse exam director for SCVAN, says Prisma Health has met these high standards of caring for sexual assault victims for years and now the hospital is able to be recognized.
“This is a new program that we started April 1st of this year, in coordination and conjunction with Sexual Assault Awareness Month. But it is targeted to hospitals and agencies that provide services to sexual assault victims. And we wanted a way to recognize them both in the community and among service providers that lets them know they are top notch,” says Gast.
The Prisma Health forensic nursing team covers six area hospitals including: Prisma Health Richland Hospital, Prisma Health Baptist Hospital, Prisma Health Baptist Parkridge Hospital, Prisma Health Tuomey Hospital, Lexington Medical Center, and MUSC Health Kershaw Medical Center.
Hospital accreditation is assigned using a three-tier system that takes staff availability into account. The program requires agencies to have at least seventy-five percent of its personnel complete a two-hour training course on how to properly care for sexual assault victims.
The goal is to make sure that when victims of sexual assault enters a hospital or agency, they are met with the same standard of care.