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Foresic Nursing: Child Abuse

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Forensic nurses care for most rape victims and are on staff at hospitals. They help gather evidence from pelvic exams and also support the victim to make sure that they are in stable comfort zone. The nurses gather evidence such as hair, blood, and swabs from different parts of the body ("Rape Victims" A Helping Hand to Rape Victims). The supplies needed is a rape kit which was developed by Louis R. Vitullo and actually used to be referred to as the Vitullo Kit (S.A.N.E Forensic Nurses). After using the rape kit the nurse tells the victim about the risks associated with rape such as pregnancy and sexually transmitted diseases. Because of rape kits, catching and convicting the criminal is a lot easier. It is important for the forensic nurse to be extremely detail orientated and not to miss any piece of evidence that is taken because it could lead to a jail free criminal. Forensic nurses are frequently called to testify in rape trials. Rape often leads to a scarred victim, who lives with this pain long after the event occurs. Forensic nurses in the emergency room help make the victim feel safe and comforted ("Rape Victims" A helping hand to Rape Victims).

Forensic nursing coursework and training typically include identification of wounding such as bruises, include training in recognition of patterned wounds, and injuries in various stages of healing. Forensic nurses are trained to objectively, record a complete chronology of the injuries from the victim, patient, parent, legal guardian, or caregiver; Forensic nurses are often skilled at crime victim photography. They also provide a medical testimony in court and provide consultation to legal authorities (E Notes, "Forensic Nursing "). Forensic nurse examiners are gaining recognition in the court system as good sources of evidence, which leads to higher conviction rates and fewer crime scene errors(All Nursing Schools "How to Become a Forensic Nurse). It is said that when a victim is being examined it would be easier for the minority women to be comforted by a SANE who is of their color(The Case for Forensic Nursing). Statistics show that about 50% of the victims treated are African American and about 20% of the victims treated are Latina while the other 30% are Caucasian(The Case for Forensic Nursing).

To earn a Forensic nursing degree it is required to first become a registered nurse. Most schools that offer a forensic nursing program with 2-year graduate-level courses award a Master of Science (MSN) degree upon completion. Working as a SANE nurse requires additional specialized credentials to prove the required training for working with victims of rape and sexual abuse has been acquired(Forensic Nursing, "How to Become a Forensic Nurse"). Although, it is not required to be certified in order to practice as a sexual assault examiner(Forensic Nursing Chronicles). To qualify for the SANE certification examination it is required to have two years of experience working as a licensed RN, hold an active nursing license and earn a MSN degree. Earning the SANE-A certificate will allow a person to be able to work with adolescents and adults. A SANE-P certificate requires three years of registered nursing experience and allows a person to practice in pediatric SANE positions. Both of these certifications must be renewed every three years and aren't required for other forensic nursing fields. Nursing schools help students cope with extreme human behavior. Therefore, forensic nurses have to learn how to "maintain their cool" under pressure and comfort victims while gathering and handling evidence. Since victims of violent crime are often brought into the emergency room for treatment, forensic nurses are set apart from other ER staff into their own section of the ER so they can perform thorough examinations. Most Patients aren't always

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