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Sexual Assault Nurse Examiners (SANEs)

Sexual Assault Nurse Examiners (SANEs) are registered nurses trained in meeting the specific healthcare needs of patients who have experienced sexual assault or abuse. SANEs can perform this care in a variety of locations, including sexual assault centers, hospitals or prisons.

The responsibility of the SANE is to:

• assess patients for acute medical needs and provide stabilization, treatment, and/or consultation;

• gather information for the forensic medical history;

• collect and document forensic evidence during the forensic medical exam, and document pertinent physical findings;

• offer information, treatment, and referrals for sexually transmitted infections (STIs), and other non-acute medical concerns;

• assess pregnancy risk and discuss treatment options with the patient, including reproductive health services; and

• testify in court if needed

Is Forensic Nursing for Me? 

How to Become a SANE

To become a SANE in Georgia, an individual must be a registered nurse (or advanced practice), preferably with two years or more experience in areas of practice that require advanced physical assessment skills, such as emergency, critical care and maternal child health. They must also complete a 40-hour didactic training that consists of both classes and clinical requirements. If you are interested in becoming a SANE, please visit the International Association of Forensic Nurses website for answers to frequently asked questions, or the SVRGA training calendar to look for SANE training classes and registration information.

Statewide SANE Coordinator

Sarah Pederson (BSN, RN, SANE-A, SANE-P) currently serves as the Georgia Statewide Sexual Assault Nurse Examiner (SANE) Coordinator. In this role, Ms. Pederson coordinates and supports new and existing SANE programs throughout the state. Her goal is to promote a consistent, professional, and patient-centered medical response for, and treatment of, sexual assault victims throughout Georgia. She also develops and coordinates continuing education training opportunities for SANEs and other disciplines within the Sexual Assault Response Team (SART).  

Ms. Pederson may be reached by phone at (404) 596-2387 or by email at