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Implementing SANE Programs in Rural Communities: The West Virginia Regional Mobile SANE Project
Publication Date:  June 2008
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About This E-Pub Message From the Director Acknowledgments About the Author Related Links
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Office of Justice Programs Seal   Office for Victims of Crime, Putting Victims First

Message From the Director

Sexual Assault Nurse Examiner (SANE) programs offer quality medical care and forensic examination to victims of sexual assault, but, unfortunately, many victims living in rural communities find it difficult to access these programs. Rural areas have struggled to establish and sustain SANE programs mainly because of a lack of funding and difficulty in recruiting and maintaining the skill level of SANEs who are specially trained to be sensitive to the needs of sexual assault victims. This replication guide, Implementing SANE Programs in Rural Communities: The West Virginia Regional Mobile SANE Project, highlights an Office for Victims of Crime (OVC) grant-funded project that developed a solution to this problem.

From 2002 to 2005, OVC provided funding for the West Virginia Foundation for Rape Information and Services (FRIS) to develop and implement a strategy for creating a SANE program in a rural area of West Virginia that could be replicated throughout the Nation. As the state sexual assault coalition, FRIS developed a mobile SANE project that involved a pool of on-call SANEs who served multiple hospitals in a four-county region of West Virginia 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. This project has enabled sexual assault victims living in rural areas of West Virginia to access quality medical services, regardless of location or time of day.

FRIS developed the Implementing SANE Programs in Rural Communities: The West Virginia Regional Mobile SANE Project replication guide to provide technical assistance to other rural communities interested in developing a SANE program. The guide describes the strategy that strengthened the design, implementation, and sustainability of a mobile SANE project, and includes materials developed through the project. The publication offers a blueprint for replication so that other communities can be successful in establishing a program similar to the one developed through the West Virginia Regional Mobile SANE Project.

John W. Gillis