Sexual Assault: Resource Overview

The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists has identified the following resources that may be helpful for ob-gyns, other health care providers, and patients on topics related to sexual assault.
 
These resources are for information purposes only and are not meant to be comprehensive. Referral to these resources does not imply ACOG’s endorsement of the organization, the organization's website, or the content of the resource. These resources may change without notice.

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Resources for Ob-Gyns and Women’s Health Care Providers
Resources for Women and Patients
External Organizations

Resources for Ob-Gyns and Women’s Health Care Providers

Committee Opinion: Sexual Assault

This Committee Opinion, issued by ACOG in April 2019, discusses the importance of screening all patients for a history of sexual assault, outlines a suggested screening protocol with sample questions, and addresses the short-term and long-term health consequences of sexual assault, such as sexually transmitted infections, mental health conditions, and the risk of pregnancy, and how to manage them appropriately.

Statement of Policy: The Role of the Obstetrician-Gynecologists in Supporting Survivors of Sexual Assault

This statement issued by the ACOG Executive Board in November 2018, reaffirms ACOG’s support of survivors of sexual assault, and encourages obstetrician-gynecologists to provide empathic care and be an available resource for patients. 

Committee Opinion: Adult Manifestations of Childhood Sexual Abuse

This Committee Opinion, issued by ACOG in August 2011 (reaffirmed 2017), discusses the psychologic, physical, and behavioral symptoms of survivors of childhood sexual abuse, and recommendations for clinicians on how to appropriately care and support these patients.

Committee Opinion: Intimate Partner Violence  

This Committee Opinion, issued by ACOG in February 2012, discusses the importance of clinicians screening and counseling patients about intimate partner violence, how to do so, and resources clinicians may provide patients.

Committee Opinion: Reproductive and Sexual Coercion 

This Committee Opinion, issued by ACOG in February 2013, discusses the importance of clinicians screening and educating patients on behaviors and actions by intimate partners that are reproductively and sexually coercive.

Committee Opinion: Human Trafficking  

This Committee Opinion, issued by ACOG in February 2011, discusses indicators associated with human trafficking to help clinicians identify potential victims of human trafficking, and how to care or assist in the care of these patients.

Committee Opinion: Health Care for Women in the Military and Women Veterans

This Committee Opinion, issued by ACOG in December 2012, discusses the unique reproductive health needs of women in the military and women veterans, and special considerations for their care, including military sexual trauma.

Committee Opinion: Improving Access of and Screening for Health Risks Among Sex Workers

This Committee Opinion, issued by ACOG in July 2017, discusses the importance of raising awareness about the health risks, preventive care needs, and limited health care services for female sex workers.


Resources for Women and Patients

Rape, Abuse & Incest National Network (RAINN)  

RAINN is a national organization that works to prevent sexual violence, help survivors of sexual violence, educate the public about sexual violence, and improve the criminal justice response to sexual violence. RAINN operates the National Sexual Assault Hotline, accessible 24/7 by phone at (800) 656-4673 and online. Also operated by RAINN is a separate hotline dedicated for members of the Department of Defense that have experienced or been affected by sexual assault, telephone (877) 995-5247 or online

  • View the RAINN website
  • Access the National Sexual Assault Hotline online
  • Access the hotline online for Department of Defense personnel
  • View RAINN’s resources web page for sexual assault survivors and their loved ones

National Domestic Violence Hotline

The National Domestic Violence Hotline connects those in need with social service providers and shelters across the United States. The hotline telephone number is open 365 days a year at 1-800-799-7233 or online.

Futures Without Violence

Futures Without Violence is an organization that develops programs, influences policies, and conducts public action campaigns to prevent and end violence against women and children around the world.

National Sexual Violence Resource Center

The National Sexual Violence Resource Center is a national resource and information hub that produces and shares tools and materials to prevent and respond to sexual violence. View the National Sexual Violence Resource Center website. 


External Organizations

How to Screen Your Patients for Sexual Assault: A Guide for Health Care Professionals

Developed by the Florida Council Against Sexual Violence, this guide assists in efforts to integrate sexual violence screening into health care practices.  

 

American Academy of Pediatrics: Guidance on the Evaluation of Children in the Primary Care Setting When Sexual Abuse is Suspected

This article, issued in August 2013 by the American Academy of Pediatrics, details the role of the physician in medically assessing and evaluating sexual abuse in children.

International Association of Forensic Nurses

The International Association of Forensic Nurses is an international membership organization comprised of forensic nurses and other professionals who support and complement the work of forensic nursing.

  • View the International Association of Forensic Nurses website
  • Access the SANE database to assist with locating certified Sexual Assault Nurse Examiners

Sexual Assault Forensic Examination Technical Assistance (SAFEta)

The SAFEta website provides guidance for developing and implementing victim services in communities based on the Department of Justices’ National Protocol for Sexual Assault Medical Forensic Examinations. To request technical assistance, call 1-877-819-7278 or request it online (via email).

National Protocol for Sexual Assault Medical Forensic Examinations of Adults/Adolescents

Developed by the U.S. Department of Justice Office on Violence Against Women, this document provides detailed guidelines for criminal justice professionals and health care practitioners in responding to the immediate needs of sexual assault victims.

National Center on Domestic and Sexual Violence

The National Center on Domestic and Sexual Violence develops and provides trainings and consultations with the goal of ending domestic and sexual violence.

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention: Sexual Violence

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention maintains a resource web page for clinicians regarding sexual violence. 


The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG), a 501(c)(3) organization, is the nation’s leading group of physicians providing health care for women. As a private, voluntary, nonprofit membership organization of more than 58,000 members, ACOG strongly advocates for quality women’s health care, maintains the highest standards of clinical practice and continuing education of its members, promotes patient education, and increases awareness among its members and the public of the changing issues facing women’s health care.