Sexual assault services

Healthcare and Forensic Medical Services for People who Have Experienced Rape, Sexual Assault or Child Sexual Abuse: Children, Young People and Adults

Draft standards

The NHS in Scotland is responsible for co-ordinating healthcare services for people following rape, sexual assault or child sexual abuse and meeting both health and support needs. Where services are not available locally, or the person (to preserve their anonymity) chooses to go outwith their own NHS board area, the NHS board will need to work collaboratively with other NHS boards and agencies.

Forensic examinations should always be undertaken in a suitable environment, and be provided by appropriately trained and competent staff. The way in which this is carried out is important since it has the potential either to support or to undermine subsequent recovery.

We are currently developing standards to ensure consistency in approach to healthcare and forensic medical services for anyone who has experienced rape, sexual assault or child sexual abuse.

The standards will set the same high level of care for everyone, regardless of the geographical location or an individual’s personal circumstances or age. They will, therefore, support the Scottish Government’s vision for the delivery of healthcare services set out in The Route Map to the 2020 Vision for Health and Social Care.

Purpose and scope

These standards aim to promote optimal care and to minimise any additional trauma. Standardising the quality of care offered will further ensure the timely collection of high quality evidence to support any criminal justice proceedings. The standards are intended to complement, not duplicate, existing standards and guidelines, including for example, the draft standards of service provision and quality indicators for the paediatric component of child protection services in Scotland.

These standards apply to anyone who has experienced rape, sexual assault or child sexual abuse, including children, young people and adults.

These standards apply to all services and organisations responsible for the delivery of healthcare and forensic medical examinations of people who have experienced rape, sexual assault or child sexual abuse.

Standards overview

The sections below will give you an overview of each of the 5 standards we have developed in relation to healthcare and forensic medical services for anyone who has experienced rape, sexual assault or child sexual abuse. Detailed information including the rationale and criteria for each standard can be found by downloading the full publication.

Each NHS board demonstrates the leadership and commitment required for a co-ordinated response to the management of people who experience rape, sexual assault or child sexual abuse, including forensic examinations, immediate clinical assessment and aftercare.

Each NHS board ensures that people who experience rape, sexual assault or child sexual abuse receive person-centred and trauma-informed care.

Each NHS board ensures that the facilities for forensic examination are appropriate, safe and effectively managed.

Each NHS board ensures that staff have the knowledge, skills and competency to deliver healthcare and forensic medical services for people who have experienced rape, sexual assault or child sexual abuse.

Each NHS board ensures that forensic examinations of people who have experienced rape, sexual assault or child sexual abuse are recorded using standardised forms.

How to participate in the consultation process

This consultation has now closed.

Support and advice

If you have been affected by any of the issues covered by our draft standards, support and advice services are available from the organisations listed below:

Published Date: 31 July 2017