Residents of Madison County and students of Colgate University and other nearby colleges now have access to a newly launched Sexual Assault Nurse Examiner (SANE) Program at Community Memorial Hospital.
This initiative — a collaboration between Colgate, the hospital, and Madison County’s Liberty Resources/Help Restore Hope Center — provides five specially trained nurses to offer comprehensive medical and psychological services specifically related to sexual assault for all residents of Southern Madison County. It continues an ongoing effort by the university to improve education, prevention, and response to sexual assault.
Colgate Director of Student Health Services Dr. Merrill Miller said the program has been in development since 2016 and is a direct result of student feedback and a commitment on behalf of Colgate’s Board of Trustees. Colgate has contributed about $125,000 toward the initiative, which includes the purchase of new equipment and specialized training for responding nurses.
“Our rural community will benefit from this first-of-a-kind team providing quality care close to home,” Miller said, adding that students needed to travel to Syracuse or Utica if they wanted similar services in the past. “Our five inaugural SANE nurses have completed extensive training courses and have been approved by New York State. They are ready to help victims become survivors and move forward after traumatic experience.”
Sean Fadale, president and CEO of Community Memorial Hospital, said this effort would not have been possible without joint cooperation and teamwork between his hospital, Colgate, and Liberty.
“The launch of this program demonstrates a combined effort of organizations and individuals focused on providing exceptional care for individuals who have suffered a sexual assault,” he said. “We are all focused on providing the best interventions possible for our patients.”
In addition to the newly launched SANE Program, Colgate has made Haven Plus, a supplemental sexual violence prevention training course required for student athletes and student organization leaders, available to all students.
“Reporting and encouraging others to report helps ensure survivors have access to resources, understand their options, and helps us eliminate sexual violence at Colgate,” said Vice President and Dean of the College Paul J. McLoughlin II.
What to do if you need help
Crisis services, including confidential resources
Haven staff and advocate contact information
Madison County SANE services can be accessed by contacting Help Restore Hope Center’s hotline at 1-855-9NOWSAFE/1-855-966-9723 or by going directly to the emergency room at Community Memorial in Hamilton. Advocates are available 24/7 to provide support to the survivor throughout the SANE exam and processes that follow; longer term help is also available.