DES PLAINES, Ill, December 31, 2013 -- The Emergency Nurses Association
congratulates the House of Representatives and Senate for including language in
the National Defense Authorization Act that provides for the increased presence
of sexual assault nurse examiners in the military to treat victims of sexual
assault and ensure that forensic evidence is properly collected.
The National Defense Authorization Act was approved by the
House on December 12 on a vote of 350-69 and the Senate on December 19 by an
85-19 margin. The bill was signed into law by President Obama on December 26.
The National Defense Authorization Act includes language
supported by ENA that requires the assignment of at least one full-time sexual
assault nurse examiner (SANE) to each military medical facility in which an
emergency department operates 24 hours per day. Additional SANEs may be
assigned based on the demographics of the patients who utilize a medical
In addition, the provision specifies that SANEs assigned to
military facilities must meet the training and certification requirements set
forth by the Secretary of Defense.
“I am very pleased
that the House and Senate have included this bipartisan legislation that will
ensure that highly-trained nurses will now be available to provide treatment to
sexual assault victims in our military,” said 2013 ENA President JoAnn Lazarus,
MSN, RN, CEN. “The requirement that each 24-hour military medical facility be
staffed by at least one sexual assault nurse examiner is an important step in improving
the medical care provided to victims.”
About the Emergency Nurses Association
ENA, which has more than 40,000 members worldwide, is the
only professional nursing association dedicated to defining the future of
emergency nursing and emergency care through advocacy, expertise, innovation
and leadership. Founded in 1970, ENA develops and disseminates education and
practice standards and guidelines, and affords consultation to both private and
public entities regarding emergency nurses and their practice. Additional
information is available at ENA's Web site, www.ena.org.