Arizona Payment Resources
Summary of Payment Program
Medical forensic exams are provided at no cost to the patient.
Medical providers are prohibited from billing the sexual assault victim for the cost of the exam, and the victim’s insurance cannot be billed for the cost of the medical forensic examination. A victim’s cooperation with police is not necessary for an exam to be paid for by the county. A sexual assault examination should be offered at no charge to the patient with a chief complaint of sexual assault that occurred within the last 120 hours. However, the victim retains the right to decline a medical forensic exam. In cases where victims choose not to report the assault to law enforcement, jurisdictions shall store non-report kits in accordance with national best practice standards of one year.
Coordination with healthcare
What is a Medical Forensic Exam?
As part of a medical forensic exam, you may choose to report the incident and speak to the police, but you do not have to talk to the police or anyone else until you are ready. Your evidence can be collected and stored anonymously until you decide whether to report (up to 90 days).
A medical forensic exam is a comprehensive medical exam performed by a specially trained Sexual Assault Nurse Examiner (SANE), Sexual Assault Forensic Examiner (SAFE), or Forensic Nurse Examiner (FNE) with advanced educational and clinical preparation. A Forensic Nurse Examiner program also provides personalized comprehensive care to patients who have experienced interpersonal violence, such as sexual assault and strangulation. A Forensic Nurse can conduct a medical forensic examination, which includes collecting evidence, offering resources, and providing expert testimony.
Victims of sexual assault need comprehensive care to address both their physical and emotional traumas. During a medical forensic examination the client receives a thorough head-to-toe examination. All physical injuries are documented and biological evidence is collected that can later be sent to the crime lab. The history of the assault is taken and documented by the examiner. Medical forensic exams take place in a quiet, confidential room without interruption. Patient care and comfort is the top priority. If it gets to be too much, the patient can stop the examination process at any time.
Adult Victim/Survivor Rights
- The patient has the right to a medical forensic exam, regardless of whether or not there is a report to law enforcement.
- There may be costs related to medical care provided by emergency department staff, such as lab work, tests, and medications.
- If the patient has questions regarding billing, an advocate can arrange to speak with emergency department staff.
- The patient can still receive medical care without having a medical forensic exam.
- Hospital staff can treat injuries and provide medications, including medication to prevent sexually transmitted infections and pregnancy.
Arizona Sexual Assault Evidence Kit Tracking – Track-Kit Login