Sexual Assault Care
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What is sexual assault?

Sexual assault is any type of unwanted sexual contact, with another person, without that person's consent.  A sexual assault may include the use of physical force, threats or intimidation. Sexual assault is an act of violence, and a crime.

Your local Emergency Department can provide care to anyone (male/female/transgendered) who is 13 years of age or older (including visitors to Canada), and who has been sexually assaulted within the past seven days. The care received will be confidential, compassionate and culturally sensitive.

If an assault happened more than seven days ago, medical care for physical and/or mental health is available from:

  • Family Physician
  • Nurse Practitioner
  • Local Community Health Clinic
  • Walk-in or youth clinics
  • Your local Emergency Department

For ongoing counselling support, or questions about the legal system, contact VictimLink by calling 1-800-563-0808.

Sexual assault violence response

Interior Health has six sites available to you 24/7. This service is accessed through your local Emergency Department. It is important to note that you can receive care at anyone of our 33 Emergency Departments, regardless of whether or not you choose to have forensic samples collected.

  • Kelowna General Hospital
  • East Kootenay Regional Hospital (Cranbrook)
  • Kootenay Boundary Regional Hospital (Trail)
  • Royal Inland Hospital (Kamloops)
  • Penticton Regional Hospital
  • Queen Victoria Hospital (Revelstoke)
  • Vernon Jubilee Hospital

What we do:

  • Individualized and confidential service
  • Compassionate and culturally sensitive care by trained professionals

Before getting to the hospital

If possible, the survivor should:

  • Do not pee (if the survivor has to, collect it in a clean container and bring it with them, write down what time it was collected)
  • Do not have a bowel movement
  • Do not eat or drink anything
  • Do not shower or take a bath
  • Do not douche or wash genitals
  • Do not change clothes
  • Do not brush teeth, floss, chew gum, or brush hair

It is still important for the survivor to go to their local Emergency Department even if any or all of the above items were done.

Arriving at the emergency department

Upon arrival the survivor will be provided a safe environment that incorporates confidential sensitive medical care and emotional support.

  • Tell the nurse what happened. 
  • Feel free to bring a support person/friend. (if available, a Social Worker (SW) will be contacted to meet with you should you wish)

The nurse or physician providing the survivors care will explain several options and choices in order to assist him/her to make an informed decision about his/her health and/or forensic care.

We explain what we can offer; the survivor will decide what is best for him/her.

Examples may be: 

  • Assessment and treatment of injuries and infections
  • Pregnancy prevention
  • Forensic sample collection
  • Medical report for police
  • Referrals to health, legal, and community based support services

What about the Police/RCMP?

At the hospital, the survivor will get information about legal options. It is his/her choice whether or not to report the sexual assault to the police, even if they were the ones that brought you to the Emergency Department. We will support whatever decision you make.


MoH     PCQO