May 25, 2017- Examination Options After Sexual Assault: Do Survivors Have to Report?

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Access to healthcare after sexual assault can be critical to survivors beginning the healing process and to prevent long term health consequences. Reporting the assault to law enforcement should not be a barrier to accessing this care. In 2005 the Violence Against Women Act (VAWA) stated that victims of sexual assault must be provided access to a medical forensic exam free of charge and without being required to cooperate with law enforcement or participate in the criminal justice system. Practical implementation of these options when working with multiple jurisdictions can be difficult without collaboration between community responders.