Date of Conferral



Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP)


Health Services


Cassandra Taylor


Survivors of sexual assault struggle to cope with subsequent psychological disturbances. The project facility was a rural hospital in the southwestern United States in which postasault care was initially provided, but survivors later returned to the emergency department. Support groups can be a powerful tool to alleviate long-term consequences of assault by helping individuals cope and improving socialization. This project used the social-ecological theory to explore whether a sexual assault support group would impact the progress of survivors toward improved social interaction, improved socialization, and decreased psychological disturbance. The purpose of the quality improvement (QI) project was the development of a sexual assault support group, based on the International Association of Forensic Nurses guideline to improve and expand health care services for survivors of sexual assault. The QI development was accomplished in conjunction with a team of local experts consisting of law enforcement, social worker, nurse, victims advocate and, a victim of sexual assault, who provided process evaluation regarding their satisfaction with the planning process through the completion of an anonymous, 10-question, Likert-type survey. A descriptive analysis of the data provided information that positively supported the development of the project. Project deliverables included the developed QI, a plan for later implementation, and plans for outcome evaluation through measurement of socialization, psychological disturbances, and emergency department visits. This project has the potential to achieve positive social change through improved quality of life for survivors of sexual assault

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Nursing Commons