JOHNSON CITY, Tenn. (WJHL) – Ballad Health announced last week that it had created a new staff position and exam room at Johnson City Medical Center that would focus on helping sexual assault victims.
On Friday, Frontier Health Safe House held a donation drive to assist in filling the exam room with calming items to help victims feel more comfortable.
Frontier Health Safe House sends advocates to the medical centers to be a calming presence to the survivors of sexual assault.
Program Director Tina Johnson said the idea for the event came from a survivor she had worked with.
“A victim that we had worked with previously last fall came to me and we really wanted to do something to kind of turn what happened to her into a positive,” Johnson said.
Advocate Amani Brice worked with the survivor who helped organized the event and said it means so much to her to see how far she has come since the assault.
“It just means a lot to see how much she’s grown also during the process and like how she just did one thing and sparked all these different things for our community,” said Brice.
The exam room is a collaborative effort between Ballad and Branch House Family Justice Center.
“They provided the nurses,” said Johnson. “They kind of worked the magic and got the room open in partnership with Ballad.”
The advocates at the Safe House said the new exam room will be helpful to the survivors.
“We know exactly where to take people, we know what the protocol is going to be like,” said advocate Kristen Hall. “It’s so much more trauma-informed and elective and efficient for victims.”
Frontier Health Safe House has a 24/7 hotline to help victims of domestic violence or sexual assault. The number is 844-578-7233.