What to Expect
MedStar Washington Hospital Center can provide a medical forensic exam for victims of sexual assault and dating or intimate partner violence 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. The exam is tailored to what the victim wants, but can include evidence collection, comprehensive medical examination, preventative medications, and referrals to longer-term resources. You will not be billed for this exam. You will not be asked for proof of residency or citizenship. You may choose to report the incident and speak to the police while you are there, but you do not have to talk to the police or anyone else. Your evidence can be collected and stored anonymously until you decide whether to report (up to 90 days).
Call 1-844-443-5732 to get a free Uber ride to the hospital and dispatch a confidential advocate to meet you at the hospital.
Bring Someone You Trust
If you feel comfortable, bring someone you trust. Bring a friend, family member, roommate, or colleague. When deciding who to bring, ask that person whether they can honor your privacy or if there are limits to the confidentiality they can offer; sometimes RAs or university staff members have reporting requirements.
Try Not to Shower
For a Sexual Assault Forensic Exam, try not to shower, bathe, douche, wash your hands, brush your teeth, comb your hair, use a toilet, eat/drink, smoke, chew gum, or change your clothes.
This may be difficult, but if you do any of this above you may destroy evidence that will be needed if you decide to report the crime to police.
Bring a Change of Clothes
In preparation for a Sexual Assault Forensic Exam, for you own comfort and to preserve evidence, bring a change of clean clothes and a paper bag filled with items involved in the incident.
Supporting Victims and Survivors
If your friend has experienced sexual assault, here are ways to support them:
- Believe them
- Help them explore their options
- Listen to them
- Never blame them for being assaulted
- Ask before touch
- Get help for yourself
Learn more about these tips with this information sheet from Men Can Stop Rape
Learn about safely intervening before a potential assault from Men Can Stop Rape