View all text of Part P [§ 280g - § 280g-17]

§ 280g–4a. Understanding sexual assault care in health systems
(a) Purpose

It is the purpose of this section to identify areas for improvement in health care delivery systems providing forensic examinations to survivors of sexual assault.

(b) GrantsThe Secretary of Health and Human Services (referred to in this section as “the Secretary”) shall award grants to States and Indian Tribes to develop and implement State and Tribal surveys to identify—
(1) the availability of, and patient access to, medical forensic examinations;
(2) the training level of the health care providers who perform medical forensic examinations;
(3) the hospitals or clinics that offer medical forensic examinations and whether each hospital or clinic has full-time, part-time, or on-call coverage;
(4) barriers to medical forensic examinations provided through sexual assault care and services;
(5) billing and reimbursement practices for medical forensic examinations;
(6) State and Tribal requirements, minimum standards, and protocols for training sexual assault examiners for sexual assault forensic examiners and for other personnel involved in medical forensic examinations;
(7) the availability of sexual assault forensic examiner training, the frequency of such training, the providers of such training, the State’s or Indian Tribe’s role in such training, and the processes or procedures in place for continuing education of such examiners; and
(8) the dedicated Federal and State funding available to support sexual assault forensic examiner training.
(c) Eligibility

To be eligible to receive a grant under this section, a State or Indian Tribe shall submit to the Secretary an application through a competitive process to be determined by the Secretary.

(d) Public dissemination and campaign
(1) Public availability

The results of the surveys conducted under grants awarded under this section shall be published by the Secretary on the website of the Department of Health and Human Services on a biennial basis.

(2) CampaignsA State or Indian Tribe that receives a grant under this section shall carry out the following activities:
(A) Make the findings of the survey conducted using amounts received under the grant public, including a map showing health care providers who perform medical forensic examinations, based on the findings from the State and Tribal surveys under subsection (b)(3).
(B) Use the findings to develop a strategic action plan to increase the number of trained medical forensic examiners available in the State or Tribal community and create policies to increase survivor access to trained examiners.
(C) Use the findings to develop and implement a public awareness campaign that includes the following:
(i) An online toolkit describing how and where sexual assault survivors can obtain assistance and care, including medical forensic examinations, in the State or Tribal community.
(ii) A model standard response protocol for health care providers to implement upon arrival of a patient seeking care for sexual assault.
(iii) A model sexual assault response team protocol incorporating interdisciplinary community coordination between hospitals, emergency departments, hospital administration, local rape crisis programs, law enforcement, prosecuting attorneys, and other health and human service agencies and stakeholders with respect to delivering survivor-centered sexual assault care and medical forensic examinations.
(iv) A notice of applicable laws prohibiting charging or billing survivors of sexual assault for care and services related to sexual assault.
(e) Authorization of appropriations

There is authorized to be appropriated to carry out this section $7,000,000 for each of fiscal years 2023 through 2027.

(Pub. L. 117–103, div. W, title V, § 503, Mar. 15, 2022, 136 Stat. 874.)