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About the Massachusetts SANE Program

Learn more about our Mission and contact us.

Program Mission

The Mission of the MA Sexual Assault Nurse Examiner (SANE) Program is to deliver compassionate, comprehensive, expert, forensic nursing care to sexual assault patients of all ages across the Commonwealth.

About us

The MA Department of Public Health provides specialized training and certification for nurses and physicians in the care of sexual assault patients. These providers are known as Sexual Assault Nurse Examiners (SANEs). They provide medical forensic examinations at no cost to patients in designated hospitals and Children’s Advocacy Centers (CACs) across the Commonwealth. The Program is currently operating a pilot project known as the National TeleNursing Center (NTC) Project. NTC SANEs use secure and encrypted video-conferencing equipment to provide “teleSANE” support to clinicians caring for adult/adolescent sexual assault patients in two MA hospitals as well at four hospitals in CA and AZ.

The MA SANE Program works in close partnership with other service agencies to support sexual assault patients including local Rape Crisis Centers and Children’s Advocacy Center staff. A Rape Crisis Advocate will respond to a designated MA SANE hospital, along with a SANE, to help support the patient and link the patient to important aftercare services. SANEs also receive training to provide court testimony. If a sexual assault patient chooses to report their assault to the police and a case results in a criminal trial, the SANE may be called to court to testify to the care they provided for the patient.

The MA SANE Advisory Board was established by the Commissioner of Public Health per Massachusetts General Law Chapter 111, section 220 to assist the MA SANE Program with systematic development and creating uniform protocols for MA SANEs.

The Board currently has representatives from the following agencies:

  • Boston Area Rape Crisis Center
  • Boston College, Connell School of Nursing
  • Boston Police Crime Lab*
  • Executive Office of Public Safety and Security*
  • Governor’s Council to Address Sexual and Domestic Violence
  • Jane Doe Inc.*
  • Department of Children and Families*
  • Disabled Persons Protection Commission*
  • MA District Attorney’s Association*
  • MA Chapter of the American Academy of Pediatrics*
  • MA Children’s Alliance*
  • MA College of Emergency Physicians*
  • MA Health and Hospital Association*
  • MA Medical Society*
  • MA Nurses Association*
  • MA Office for Victim Assistance*
  • MA Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Children
  • MA State Police Crime Lab*
  • MA State Council — Emergency Nurses Association*
  • MA State Police
  • Office of MA Attorney General*
  • Victim Rights Law Center

*Statutory Member

Additional Resources

SANE staff