Finding hope, Healing and Justice

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Scottsdale Healthcare’s Forensic Examiners Unit

They are the crimes no one wants to think about, much less talk about. And, they happen in Scottsdale and throughout Maricopa County. A woman is sexually attacked by a stranger. Another is strangled by her husband. A young runaway is beaten by her pimp. Many others, women and men, are physically assaulted or abused on a daily basis.Get Involved

They are victims of horrific crimes which happen all too often, right here in our own community. Yet, in their darkest hour, hope shines through in the form of Scottsdale Healthcare’s Forensic Nurse Examiners (FNE) program. This community program serves survivors across Maricopa County. Traditionally Prior to 1998, sexual assault victims were seen in hospital emergency rooms. Now, working in conjunction with local law enforcement, the FNE program offers compassionate, quality medical care in an at one of five advocacy centers, that are located throughout Maricopa County. These centers offer which offers a safe, private and comfortable environment alternative to a hospital emergency room. The services are administered by a team of specially trained Forensic Nurse Examiners. These compassionate professionals perform head-to-toe medical-forensic examinations, which include injury documentation along with the collection the samples and evidence. Along with the nurses’ expert testimony, these are often needed for successful prosecution. and even provide expert testimony in court. With the special care and support they receive, these survivors, like Kim Hedrick, also get the best possible chances that their abusers will be prosecuted and justice will be done.

Kim’s entire world was turned upside-down in November 2009 when she was brutally beaten, bitten and repeatedly raped. The traumatic experience left her with permanent hearing loss in one ear, and for some time, a justifiable fear of leaving home. That changed, however, on the very day that her attacker—a serial rapist—was convicted for his horrific crime. “I got my life back,” explains Kim, a strong young woman who now enjoys starting her day with an early-morning hike before going to work. Both the successful prosecution of her attacker and her ability to move forward are thanks in large part to the FNE program, according to Kim. “They gave me my joy and smile back,” she says. “I truly believe I would not be where I am today if it wasn’t for the forensic nurses program and its role in his being prosecuted. I would be living in fear instead of being able to move on.” In today’s world of shrinking budgets, this critical program is available in part through the generous and caring support of donors to Scottsdale Healthcare Foundation.