Enhancing care for sexual assault victims in underserved communities.
The first step toward healing.
No matter where victims of sexual assault live, they should be able to access expert care. And no matter where nurses work, they should have the support of a network of experts when dealing with sexual assault cases. Having a forensic exam performed with expert nursing assistance via telehealth can be the first step toward healing, providing patients with a safe, supported environment.
How We Work
The Sexual Assault Forensic Examination Telehealth Center (SAFE-T Center) was launched with support from the Department of Justice, Office for Victims of Crime as a solution to enhance access to high quality sexual assault care in underserved communities. When a sexual assault examination is performed at one of our partner hospitals, one of SAFE-T Center’s expert nurses participates through telehealth. The expert nurse appears on a screen where she can talk to, and support, both the on-site nurse and the patient. Through our specialized digital telehealth technology, she can also see the live exam in progress, ensuring best practices, proper evidence collection and a safe, helpful environment for the patient.
Equality of Care Wherever You Live
24/7 Expert Nurses
Better Images and Documentation
Proven Secure Infrastructure
24/7 Technical Support
Training and Education
We want to increase the confidence and skills of clinicians who conduct forensic exams. With support from the SAFE-T Center, we will retain more sexual assault nurse examiners (SANEs) in their jobs because they will know a more experienced SANE has their back.
Former Deputy Director, U.S. Department of Justice, Office for Victims of Crime
Who We Serve and How We Help
With SAFE-T Center, you have access to an expert nurse when you need it most: as you are performing examinations. The SAFE-T Center nurses help by enhancing your own expertise, ensuring that you do not have to do this difficult work in isolation.
Research has shown that people living in rural areas experience significant health disparities, including quality sexual assault care. By providing expertise through telehealth, SAFE-T Center helps address these disparities for victims of sexual assault. We help local forensic nurses with real-time support, quality assurance, and peer review throughout the exam—a proven gold standard of care.
Sexual assault examinations can be technically and emotionally difficult, and staff performing these exams may be difficult to retain. SAFE-T Center helps administrators train and retain talented nurses by offering quality assurance, peer support, mentorship, and on-demand training. We can help your nurses do a better job and feel confident in their work.
District Attorneys and Law Enforcement
SAFE-T Center strengthens forensic evidence collection and documentation by ensuring that best practices are used; best practices are supported through ongoing feedback, training, and quality assurance of peer review of examinations. The SAFE-T Center helps to develop competent and confident nurse examiners who can provide accurate testimony when needed.
Serving rural and underserved areas through telehealth.
Rural and underserved communities often struggle to support specialized medical practices such as forensic exams. With the support of SAFE-T Center, each of our partner sites has access to experienced professionals for telehealth support during forensic exams, training for nurses and health care professionals, and community education.
Launching in 2020
SAFE-T Center Team
Sheridan Miyamoto, PhD, FNP, RN
Cynthia Bittner, RN, BS
Clinical & Administration
Sarah Watson, MA
Regina Lozinski, MS
Research Project Manager
Joslyn Neiderer, MA
Project Outreach Coordinator
Madisyn Barnes, BS
Jonathan Essick, BS
Telehealth IT Manager
Sheridan Miyamoto in Penn State College of Nursing is one of 11 nurse scientists accepted to the inaugural cohort of the Betty Irene Moore Fellowships for Nurse Leaders and Innovators. This new fellowship program, funded by a five-year, $37.5 million grant from the...
UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. — Penn State’s Sexual Assault Forensic Examination Telehealth (SAFE-T) Center has been utilizing telehealth along with a community-engaged solution to enhance sexual assault care in rural and underserved communities in Pennsylvania. Now, its...
LOCK HAVEN — Roads to Peace and Lock Haven UPMC have been working together a lot more since the new SAFE-T program launched. Lock Haven UPMC notified the SART (Sexual Assault Response Team) Team about the SAFE-T program during winter of 2019. Roads to Peace was...
UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. — Having access to high-quality, sexual-assault care is vital, especially during these uncertain times. Penn State’s Sexual Assault Forensic Examination Telehealth (SAFE-T) Center is continuing to provide support to sexual-assault nurse examiners...
UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. — The Penn State College of Nursing’s SAFE-T Center team, led by assistant professor and center director Sheridan Miyamoto, is working to address barriers to healthcare for rural sexual-assault victims with their new telehealth solution, the...
LOCK HAVEN — With a beefed up staff and a new focus on helping, rather than jailing, people who commit non-violent crimes, Clinton County District Attorney Dave Strouse is finding some success … and increased conviction rates. Strouse spoke to a packed house at...