Friday, July 9, 2010

Sexual Assault victim turned away from Ottawa Hospital

"Last Sunday, police brought a woman to the emergency room of the Civic campus of The Ottawa Hospital, home to Ottawa’s only provincially-designated program for sexual assault cases.

It’s one of 35 centres across Ontario providing specialized care and counselling to victims in the aftermath of an assault, including the preparation of evidence kits for prosecutions. As detailed in a lengthy 2006 protocol with the police and community groups, the hospital’s Sexual Assault and Partner Abuse Care Program is to provide care “24 hours a day, seven days a week, 365 days a year.”

That’s not what happened last Sunday.

None of the hospital’s sexual assault nurses were available on Sunday, says Mike Tierney, vice-president of clinical programs at The Ottawa Hospital.

The patient was given the option of going home and returning later for treatment, or seeking treatment at the hospital in Renfrew."

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