Where can I go?
After experiencing a sexual assault you may receive free initial medical care and a free forensic exam at any medical emergency department or at the YWCA.
YWCA Family Justice Center
310 E. Broadway, Salt Lake City, UT 84111
The Family Justice Center provides sexual assault forensic exams 24/7 in a family friendly environment. A playroom is available for children and appointments may be made in advance over the telephone.
What will my visit be like?
A sexual assault medical forensic exam offers several services to survivors, including collection of forensic evidence, treatment for injuries, emergency contraception and preventive sexually transmitted infection treatment.
A sexual assault nurse examiner (SANE) can collect all evidence during a “code-R” or rape kit procedure, which may take a few hours. The exam may include a full body examination, swabs, photographs and collection of clothing and other items, but nothing is done without the permission of the patient. A patient may opt to forgo the exam or agree to only parts of the exam.
A confidential victim advocate from the Rape Recovery Center will be available for support and patients may have friends or family with them. A police detective will be available to make a report and establish a case number. The case number may be used to cover the cost of the sexual assault exam. The patient is under no obligation to file a report or answer questions and may request that the police detective leave at any time.
In Utah, medical forensic (Code-R) exams may be done up to five days after a sexual assault — or longer if a patient is experiencing pain or bleeding. However, medical forensic evidence is perishable and should be collected as soon as possible (within five days). A patient seeking a medical exam will also be offered medication to prevent sexually transmitted diseases and pregnancy. Medication to prevent pregnancy is most effective if taken within three days after an assault.
For a detailed description of the process, see RAINN’s article on Rape Kit Procedures.
What is the cost?
Sexual assault exams are free. Costs are covered by the Utah Office for Victims of Crime if the survivor establishes a case number with the responding police detective.
Who can be treated?
By law, anyone can receive treatment for sexual violence in a hospital emergency room regardless of age, gender identity, sexual orientation, drug or alcohol use, or documentation status. If the patient is under age 18, a child advocate will be available and mandatory reporting laws apply. Patients participating in illegal activity and patients without documentation have the right to treatment and will not be interrogated, detained, or turned away. A confidential victim advocate will be available to answer questions and help protect the best interests of the patient.