Medical staff from Safe and Healthy families – Primary Children’s Hospital
A free exam provided through a Children’s Justice Center is performed by medical staff from Safe and Healthy families Primary Children’s Hospital who are trained to work with children who may have been abused or assaulted. A medical exam may be requested by law enforcement, Child Protective Services, or medical professionals.
Purpose of Exam
A forensic medical evaluation is performed for the purpose of evaluation and treatment of physical abuse, sexual abuse and neglect. All examinations are comprehensive and carefully conducted in a child friendly setting, and involve a complete medical history and non-invasive, head to toe physical exam. When there are concerns of sexual abuse, the exam might include treatment of exposure to sexually transmitted infections and other testing. Following a report of acute sexual assault, forensic evidence may be collected by the medical staff. Some children are evaluated for concerns of physical abuse or neglect. In addition to the physical exam, our medical staff may order X-Rays or laboratory tests to aid in the evaluation. All forensic medical evaluations take into consideration the physical, emotional and behavior consequences of child maltreatment. Children are also provided reassurance that their bodies are “okay.”
What to Expect
The medical examination will take place at the Children’s Justice Center, within the medical room. The exam will last approximately 2 hours. A full medical history will be collected from a parent or guardian. Please provide the name of the child’s primary care provider, for the purpose of coordination of care. All exam findings are photographed, with the use of a DSLR camera or special instrument, called a colposcope. Photos allow our medical staff to interpret findings in greater detail, and permits expert review without the child having to undergo repeat examination. Our staff makes every effort to deliver evidence based medical care in a trauma informed manner.