The Forensic Sexual Assault Medical Legal Examination: The SANE Exam

  • Cari Caruso RN SANE-A


The Sexual Assault Nurse Examiner (SANE) is an experienced Registered Nurse who has expanded the knowledge and skills, that come naturally for the time-honored nurse, and transitioned those proficiencies into the specialty of forensic nursing. The Sexual Assault Nurse Examiner will conduct comprehensive, compassionate, and exemplary forensic sexual assault medical legal examinations, on reported victims and suspects of sexual assault events. It is an examination that requires distinct professional boundaries, nursing judgment, and the objectivity necessary for an independent, nonbiased forensic examination.

The “N” in “SANE” is for “Nurse.” The first consideration, for the SANE, is the patient’s health and well-being. The forensic nurse is always an advocate for the patients’ health and well-being but not necessarily an advocate for the circumstances. That way, the nurse examiner will remain objective throughout the process, from the forensic examination to the courtroom, should the case should go to trial.

SANE programs strive to have someone on-call 24/7 unless otherwise arranged due to staffing or distance issues. The time frame for an acute forensic examination is up to 5 days to 7 days. The program will structure the call schedule according to policy.

The sexual assault nurse examiner position will most likely be a part-time position which requires a full-time knowledge base. It is well worth it for the registered nurse who is objective and detail oriented.


Sexual assault SANE Sexual assault nurse examiner Forensic nurse examiner Forensic examination Evidence collection 


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Copyright information

© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Cari Caruso RN SANE-A
    • 1
  1. 1.Forensic Nurse ProfessionalsSimi ValleyUSA

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