The MA Pediatric Sexual Assault Nurse Examiner (SANE) Program provides direct care to child victims of sexual abuse and assault throughout the Commonwealth of Massachusetts. Pediatric SANEs provide coordinated, expert forensic and medical care in accordance with "Do No Harm" principles to child victims 11 years of age and younger. Below is a list of Pediatric SANEs within the Child Advocacy Centers and the one emergency response model.

Pediatric SANEs in Action

  • Pediatric SANE services are currently provided in six of the state's Children's Advocacy Centers. A 24 hr, 7 day/week Pediatric SANE emergency response is in place at Lawrence General Hospital.
  • Pediatric SANEs provide forensic examinations, medical care and emotional support for children through 17th birthday and younger when there are concerns or disclosures of sexual abuse.
  • When caring for children 11 years and younger following acute assaults (< 72 hours of presentation), Pedi SANEs use the "state of the art" Massachusetts Pediatric Sexual Assault Evidence Collection Kit for forensic evidence collection, and the Medscope® Camera for video-documentation.
  • Care is also provided for children with chronic abuse (> 72 hours of presentation or episodic abuse over a period of time). In these situations the Medscope® Camera is utilized for documentation of possible old or healing injuries.
  • When performed by skilled Pediatric SANEs, the forensic sexual abuse examination is the first step in psychological, physical and emotional healing for the child and non-offending caregiver.
  • Pediatric SANEs provide crisis intervention, support and education for children and families. Skilled intervention provides a sense of well-being and normalcy to not only the young patient, but to their family as well
  • As mandated reporters, Pediatric SANEs work closely with the Department of Children and Families (DCF) to ensure the safety of the child
  • Pediatric SANEs provide interpretation of forensic exam findings for other members of the multidisciplinary team, and act as an important liaison between the multidisciplinary team and the child's Primary Care Provider.
  • Pediatric SANEs provide consultation and education to community providers regarding the care of the child who has been sexually abused
  • Pediatric SANEs work with law enforcement and criminal justice and may be called to testify on their exam findings.

Pediatric SANE Providers

  • Are certified and credentialed through the MA Department of Public Health
  • Complete 48 hour didactic training and must successfully complete a written examination
  • Demonstrate competency through preceptored examinations with seasoned child sexual abuse clinicians/experts
  • Have access to expert clinical advisors for case consultation/review
  • Participate in on-going continuing education and training

Key Advisors and Supporters Include Members of the Pediatric SANE Advisory Group

  • Massachusetts Department of Children and Families (DCF)
  • Massachusetts District Attorney's Association
  • Massachusetts Office for Victim Assistance
  • Boston Medical Center, Children's Hospital, Massachusetts General Hospital, Lawrence General Hospital
  • Massachusetts Nurses Association
  • Boston Police and State Police Crime Labs
  • Massachusetts Children's Alliance (MACA)
  • Massachusetts Emergency Medical Services for Children
  • Massachusetts Sexual Assault Prevention and Survivor Services
  • Massachusetts Society for the Protection of Cruelty to Children (MSPCC)
  • Jane Doe Inc.
  • Disabled Persons Protection Commission
  • Massachusetts College of Emergency Physicians
  • Executive Office of Public Safety, Programs Division
  • Governor's Commission on Sexual and Domestic Violence
  • The Pediatric SANE Protocol and Pediatric SANE Training Curriculum were created with funds from the Edward Byrne Memorial Grant.
  • The Massachusetts Pediatric Sexual Assault Evidence Collection Kit (MPSAECK) was created and produced with funds from the Massachusetts Executive Office of Public Safety. This pediatric evidence collection kit is the "first of its kind" and has been showcased at several national conferences.

Pediatric SANE Services in Emergency Departments (EDs)

Pediatric SANE services are currently available on a 24 hr, 7 day/week basis in the following ED:

  • Lawrence General Hospital
    Phone 978-683-4000 ext 2500

Pediatric SANE Services in Children's Advocacy Centers (CACs)

Pediatric SANE services are currently in place in the following counties

  • Berkshire County - Berkshire County Kid's Place - Pittsfield
  • Bristol County CAC - Bristol County CAC, Fall River
  • Essex County CAC - Essex Children’s Advocacy Center - Lawrence General Hospital
  • Norfolk County CAC - Norfolk Advocates for Children - Foxboro
  • Plymouth County Children’s Advocacy Center - Brockton
  • Suffolk County CAC - Boston


This information is provided by the Violence Prevention and Intervention Services within the Department of Public Health.