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Parliamentary Debates and Questions

S5W-13621: Annie Wells (Glasgow)

Scottish Conservative and Unionist Party

Date lodged: 21 December 2017

To ask the Scottish Government how many victims of sexual assault were examined in police stations in (a) 2014-15, (b) 2015-16 and (c) 2016-17.

Answered by: Michael Matheson 16 January 2018

The information requested is not held centrally by the Scottish Government.

In December 2017, Healthcare Improvement Scotland, commissioned by the Scottish Government, published the first Healthcare and Forensic Medical Services Standards for people who have experienced rape, sexual assault or child sexual abuse. These standards will ensure consistency in approach and high-quality care across Scotland.

Standard 3 states that each NHS board ensures that the facilities and equipment for forensic examinations are appropriate, safe and effectively managed. This includes a criteria that forensic examinations take place in facilities that are located in health or designated multi-agency settings with health and social care facilities. Standard 5 requires that the details of the examination are recorded using consistent documentation and data collection. The standards can be accessed here: http://www.healthcareimprovementscotland.org/our_work/person-centred_care/resources/sexual_assault_services.aspx

The Scottish Government has established a Taskforce for the improvement of services for adults and children who have experienced rape and sexual assault, chaired by the Chief Medical Officer for Scotland. As set out in the Taskforce’s five year work plan, an early priority is to support health boards to have the equipment they need and to move any forensic medical examination facilities from police settings to health and social care settings. The Taskforce’s 5 year work plan can be accessed here: https://beta.gov.scot/publications/rape-and-sexual-assault-victims-taskforce-high-level-work-plan/High%20Level%20Work%20Plan.pdf?inline=true

The Scottish Government will provide £250k in 2017-18 and £2.0m in 2018-19 to support Health Boards to embed the new standards and support delivery of the work plan.