The Department of Health’s role in responding to recent victims of sexual assault is to provide medical care, forensic medical examinations, sexual health assistance, crisis counselling and information. These responses are provided by public hospitals, the Clinical Forensic Medicine Unit (CMFU) and may include specialist sexual assault teams. The extent and nature of this care varies across health service districts in accordance with local procedures and resources.
Assistance and care in the acute phase includes:
- medical treatment
- collection and documentation of medico-legal evidence where appropriate
- sexual health information and treatment
- information about rights as a victim of crime
- information about reporting to police and legal processes
- support and information extended to support networks.
In addition, the department provides education and training available to government and non-government agencies with an aim to broaden community knowledge, improve responses and prevent sexual violence as outlined in the National Plan to Reduce Violence against Women and their Children 2010 – 2022.
Caring for people disclosing sexual assault
Queensland Health's role in supporting victims of sexual assault is set out in the health service directive Caring for people disclosing sexual assault (PDF, 257KB), which came into effect on 22 July 2019.
The directive also introduced the option for an adult, who has not reported their assault to police, to have a forensic examination just in case they decide to make a complaint to police later. Special custody arrangements have been introduced for samples collected from the just in case forensic examinations which will be stored, untested for up to 12 months.
- Difficulties with relationships, work and daily life (PDF, 161KB)
- Facts about Sexual Assault (PDF, 139KB)
- Frequently Asked Questions (PDF, 181KB)
- Mental Health (PDF, 268KB)
- Resilience (PDF, 169KB)
- Self care following a Sexual Assault (PDF, 162KB)
- Sexual Assault and Queensland Law - What is sexual assault (PDF, 140KB)
- Sexual Health - following a sexual assault (PDF, 137KB)
- Supporting someone you care about (PDF, 140KB)
- To Report or not to Report (PDF, 182KB)
- Caring for people disclosing sexual assault (PDF, 257KB)Response to sexual assault - Queensland Government Interagency Guidelines (2014) (PDF, 381KB)
- Review of Queensland Health responses to adult victims of sexual assault (2009) (PDF, 720KB)
- Spall Watters Feedback Paper - Moving Forward Information Sessions (2009) (PDF, 1.34MB)