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The Pohutukawa Clinic is a specialist medical service for anyone age 18 or over who has been sexually assaulted or abused.
We are a dedicated team of doctors and nurses with specialist training in sexual assault care and forensic medicine.
We will see you, regardless of gender, age, sexual orientation, ethnicity, disability or residency status.
Our services are FREE.
We want to reassure you that you are in control of what happens in our clinic. We will explain what we can offer you and then you can decide what you do and do not want to do.
Crisis support services provide free confidential support for sexual abuse survivors. We work closely with these agencies and they can also connect you to us.
Our service covers the Auckland region. If you are outside Auckland, the national network of specialist sexual assault clinicians SAATSLink() will help you find your nearest sexual assault medical service.
Yes, your privacy and confidentiality is very important to us and the utmost care is taken to keep your details and circumstances private.
Bring in the clothes (including underwear) you were wearing when you were assaulted. We may have to collect your clothing for evidence, so you may want to bring a spare change of clothes. We can also provide new clothes if needed.
Most examinations are at Greenlane Clinical Centre.
It ranges, but usually 1-2 hours.
We will start by asking about your medical health, medications, contraception, menstrual history, sexual history and any symptoms you might have. This information helps us look after your health needs. Don’t worry, all this information is confidential. If you decide to involve the police, we will ask your consent before passing any information on to the police.
We will ask you about the sexual assault. To reassure you, we just need the general story, not all the details. This will help us decide what sort of examination needs to be done.
You will be offered a physical examination if you feel comfortable to do so. Not everybody needs this. If you do have one, the clinician will make sure you feel safe and keep everything as private as possible. You can stop at any time you wish.
During the examination we may collect evidence with your permission again. This can include swabs taken for semen and saliva, urine and blood tests, clothing and hair samples. The police will collect this evidence and scientists will examine it and provide a report to the police.
We will treat and provide advice on any injuries you may have. However, if you have any serious injuries such as broken bones and head injuries you may need to be seen at hospital. We will help with any concerns you have about pregnancy or sexually transmitted infections. We will give you information on how you can get counselling and access help from other support services.
We encourage crisis services to be part of your assessment as they are experts in this field. You are welcome to bring a friend or whānau member with you to the Clinic for support.
You do not have to report to the Police to access our service.
No. Many people think that there are injuries to the genitals or other areas after a sexual assault, which the doctor will be able to see. This isn’t necessarily the case and the police understand this. There are several reasons why you may not have visible injuries after an assault. For example:
The type of contact that happened, for example touching, kissing, doesn’t cause injury.
Your genital tissues are stretchy and allow things to go inside without necessarily causing an injury.
A small injury happened, but it healed by the time you were examined.