MeritCare Nurse Certified as a Pediatric Sexual Assault Nurse Examiner

Carrie Simonson, RN, MeritCare Child & Adolescent Maltreatment Services, has taken her expertise in this specialized field of forensic nursing to the next level. Simonson recently became certified as a Sexual Assault Nurse Examiner – Pediatric (SANE-P).

Fargo, ND - The possibility of child sexual abuse strikes fear in communities large and small. Carrie Simonson, RN, has taken her expertise in this specialized field to the next level. A forensic nurse in Fargo, she recently became certified as a Sexual Assault Nurse Examiner – Pediatric (SANE-P).

SANE-P is a credentialing process voluntarily undertaken by forensic nurses to ensure excellence in sexual assault nursing. Simonson is the only nurse in North Dakota with this certification.

Simonson works at MeritCare in Child & Adolescent Maltreatment Services. She's on the team led by Arne Graff, M.D., MeritCare specialist who is fellowship-trained in child abuse pediatrics. Says Dr. Graff: "The dedication Carrie has displayed in becoming SANE-P certified demonstrates superior commitment to quality patient care - care that's sensitive, compassionate and highly competent."

As a forensic nurse, Simonson works with medical and legal professionals to correctly collect evidence and obtain information. As a specially trained children's nurse, she provides an invaluable source of support to young patients at a vulnerable time.

"My job gives me the opportunity to give back to our community and region by helping these kids know their bodies are OK and they did nothing wrong," says Simonson. "We get them setup to receive special counseling to help them get beyond the abuse so they can live a peaceful life."

MeritCare Child & Adolescent Maltreatment Services is under the MeritCare Children's Hospital and Clinic umbrella specializing in treating children who have been victims of abuse and neglect. They are committed to improving the response to child physical and sexual abuse in North Dakota, western Minnesota and northwestern South Dakota. Services include pediatric forensic interviews, specialized medical exams to evaluate abuse types, treatment, advocacy, mental health support, and referrals to other agencies.