The purpose of a forensic medical exam is to determine the health and well-being of the victim and collect any forensic medical evidence of a crime. The exam is conducted with crime victims who have experienced some form of assault, be it physical, sexual or both. These exams are performed by specially trained forensic medical examiners, which include pediatricians, nurse practitioners, and Sexual Assault Nurse Examiners.
Violence Against Women Act (VAWA)
The Southwest Family Advocacy Center is an Arizona Forensic Medical Examination location.
Under the Violence Against Women Act (VAWA), adult victims/survivors of sexual assault have the right to a medical forensic exam, at no cost to you, regardless of whether you report to law enforcement.
A forensic exam is a comprehensive medical exam provided by a registered nurse, nurse practitioner, or physician with specialized training in the medical care and treatment of sexual and domestic violence victims. Each part of the exam requires your consent and you do not have to participate in anything that makes you uncomfortable. You always have the right to say "YES" and "NO" at any point in the exam.
Forensic Nurse Examiners provide quality, compassionate nursing care as they provide head-to-toe medical-forensic examinations on victims. During the exam, FNE collects medical samples and document injuries. This evidence can be vital to an investigation of interpersonal violence and help law enforcement prosecute abusers and attackers.
In Maricopa County, HonorHealth Forensic Nurse Examiner Program conducts medical forensic exams at Family Advocacy Centers (FACs) located in Mesa, Scottsdale, Glendale, Goodyear, and Downtown Phoenix.
If reporting to law enforcement, the exam will be scheduled on your behalf and you will be transported to the FAC. Call 9-1-1.
If you do not wish to report to law enforcement and live in Maricopa County, you can call HonorHealth at 480-312-6339 (available 24/7) and enter a call back number. A nurse will call you back soon after. If you reside in Arizona but do not live in Maricopa County, review this list of Medical Forensic Exam facilities in Arizona.
For more information on victim/survivor rights, medical and advocacy options, what to expect during a medical forensic exam, and the decision to report to police, see the Arizona Sexual Assault Forensic Exam Factsheet, or you can speak with an advocate at the Legal Advocacy Hotline: 602-279-2900/800-782-6400/TTY 602-279-7270