Horizon makes changes to sexual assault services


New Brunswick’s Horizon Health Network has introduced a number of changes to its sexual assault nurse examiner program, together with a brand new identify, that may assist guarantee constant entry and improved care to sexual assault and intimate accomplice violence victims.

The well being authority’s new collection of methods contains growing a provincial training technique, growing staffing and growing a provincial training technique.

The changes come following an inside overview triggered final month after a sexual assault sufferer who visited an emergency room in Fredericton to get a rape equipment carried out was turned away.

Forensic nurse examiners (FNE) — previously generally known as the sexual assault nurse examiner (SANE) program — present specialised nursing services and trauma-informed care to victims of sexual assault, intimate accomplice violence and maltreatment to any particular person, together with males, girls, teenagers, kids, seniors and members of the LGBTQ neighborhood.

FNEs are additionally skilled to conduct medical forensic exams, together with analysis for proof assortment, whereas offering efficient courtroom testimony and exhibiting compassion and sensitivity in the direction of survivors of sexual and/or intimate accomplice violence.

The new plan comes with a price of about $1.16 million, which is able to cowl the price of hiring further coordinators and nursing employees to help this system.

“The expansion of Forensic Nurse Examiner services will help ensure that safe, compassionate and quality personalized care for survivors of sexual assault and intimate partner violence, regardless of gender, can be provided and that resources are available in the right place at the right time at each of Horizon’s five FNE sites,” mentioned Margaret Melanson, the interim president and CEO at Horizon Health Network, in a information launch Wednesday.

The changes embody:

  • Additional staffing in all 5 areas served by Horizon, which embody Moncton, Saint John, Fredericton, Upper River Valley and Miramichi.

  • The formation of a provincial governance committee. The community says the committee will embody leaders and specialists from Horizon, Vitalité and the Department of Health.

  • Development of a provincial FNE training technique.

  • Rebranding of the previous SANE program to FNE.

The changes additionally name for the addition of full-time FNE protection for 16 hours per day in Moncton, Saint John and Fredericton, in addition to eight hours per day within the Upper River Valley and Miramichi.

“We are going to be investing in everlasting sources, the place this program predominantly relied on informal or on-call sources to be recruited,” mentioned Greg Doiron, Horizon’s vice-president of scientific operations. “On high of their common regular day jobs, these individuals might be devoted to supporting the identical program.”

Melanson says the brand new program will finest meet the wants of each sufferers and employees.

“These measures are consultant of our overarching organizational dedication to offering higher entry to health-care services and bettering the affected person expertise. I would really like to thank our FNE groups for his or her energetic participation on this course of, and for his or her continued dedication to this important program and the sufferers it serves,” mentioned Melanson.

Horizon says it continues to work with the Vitalité Health Network and the New Brunswick authorities so these enhancements might be finalized and enacted as rapidly as attainable.


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