For Professionals

For advice, call SARC on (08) 6458 1828


via King Edward Hospital switchboard (08) 6458 2222 any time

Health Professionals about to see a patient following a sexual assault

List of WA Services and Service Directories (PDF)

General Education and Training


The SARC education and training team comprises a small group of professionals with experience and knowledge in the field of sexual violence. The team provides training opportunities related to sexual violence and trauma, to workers, volunteers and students in Western Australia. All SARC trainers hold degrees in social work and/or psychology.


SARC Education and Training offers a range of professional development opportunities to students and professionals working or volunteering in government, non-government and private organisations.

Presentations are delivered at your workplace by an experienced SARC trainer. Presentations can run consecutively to enable half day and full day training sessions.

For an overview of all general training opportunities available in 2021, please see our flyer SARC Presentations 2021.

General presentations

Presentations can be offered in combinations and half or full day options.

*The first 5 presentations above are now offered free to most not-for-profit and non-fee paying organisations. A minimum of 10 attendees is required. Training is available Mondays, Tuesdays and Wednesdays. 

Workshops hosted by SARC

Presentations for youth and university students

  • Consent and Relationships

    Suitable for post-school age youth including TAFE and university students (particularly first year students). Covers key concepts about sexual consent, safety and the relationship aspects of sex.

    2 hours. $420. Max of 35.

  • Student Leader Training 

    Suitable for university student leaders who are involved in running clubs and/or organising events.

    2 hours. $420. Max of 35.

 Metro Presentation Costs 
Within WA Department of Health (DOH) External to WA DOH
 1 hour  $250 $260 
 1.5 hours  $325 $340
 2 hours  $400 $420
 Half day combination  $550 $580 
 Full day combination  $1100 $1160 
  Prices include GST

Several  presentations are now offered free to most not-for-profit and non-fee paying organisations. Please direct queries in an email to



Training enquiries can be directed to

Video conferences for regional workers

The following presentations have been recorded and are available to regional workers. The presentations can be viewed individually or as a team and allow workers to access them at their convenience. When viewing is completed, we ask workers to complete the short survey at the end of the presentation to enable SARC to gather feedback and statistics.

Please contact to obtain a password to view the presentations.

  • Responding to Disclosures of Sexual Assault (general)
  • Responding to Disclosures of Sexual Abuse – for health appointments involving physical contact (for nurses, doctors, physios, etc.)
  • The Impact of Trauma
  • Vicarious Trauma and Self Care for Workers (personal)

e-learning package

A free e-learning package on Responding to Disclosures of Sexual Assault is available for completion at the link below. The package takes approximately 2 to 2.5 hours to complete and includes interactive questions and 2 challenging quizzes. A certificate is available upon completion.

Services can use the e-learning package in a number of ways including: professional development of workers, part of a compulsory induction for new workers and an annual refresher for workers.

View the Responding to Disclosures of Sexual Assault e-learning package.

Contact us

To find out more information please contact the Education and Training Team at SARC on (08) 6458 1820 or email us on

Medical and Forensic Training

SARC doctors offer a variety of training regarding the medical and forensic aspects of responding to a recent adolescent or adult sexual assault. The medical team provide face-to-face training at metropolitan emergency departments, recognised GP events, universities and various forums. Training is also offered via video conferencing to doctors and nurses in regional and remote areas of WA.

An overview of regular training events is outlined below. 

Specific requests for training of students or work teams, or speaking engagements can be directed to

Emergency Management of adult Sexual Assault - for metro ED workers  

Contact the education and training team with any requests for training

Regional and Remote WACHS Workers - Responding to a Sexual Assault in ED

Forensic presentations are delivered to regional workers via video conferencing periodically. Refer to the Emergency Telehealth web page for details and registration.

Forensic 3 day Clinical Training

This assessed, 3 day WA Health training programme addresses the many issues involved in responding to recent adolescent and adult sexual assault. It provides the skills and knowledge required for nurses, midwives and doctors to deliver medical care and perform a forensic examination with the collection of forensic specimens.

Content of 3-day Forensic Clinical Training

Following completion of the course, and passing a written assessment, participants will be qualified to collect forensic specimens following sexual assault as approved by WA legislation, Criminal Investigation Act Amendment 2011.

Forensic clinical courses are generally offered in Perth approximately once each year, for regional nurses and doctors. Depending on staffing and resources, courses can occasionally be offered in regional locations. The WACHS location is required to cover all costs involved in training delivery.

Currently there are no forensic courses scheduled due to resourcing issues.

e-learning: Responding to Disclosures of Sexual Assault

A free psychosocial e-learning package on Responding to Disclosures of Sexual Assault is available. The package takes approximately 2 hours to complete and provides an overview of sexual violence issues in Australia and identifies the psychosocial skills required to effectively respond to disclosures.

Enquiries and requests for training can be directed in an email to


SARC has a range of resources available. Most of the materials below can be downloaded and printed.

Client information handouts



Please contact a hospital if you need testing and/or treatment for sexually transmitted infection, or for any other health issue.

Perth Metropolitan

Sexual and Reproductive Health WA (08) 9227 6177
Fremantle Hospital Sexual Health Clinic (08) 9431 2149
Royal Perth Hospital Sexual Health Clinic (08) 9224 2178
Quarry Health Centre for Under 25s (08) 9430 4544
Sexual Health Helpline (08) 9227 6178 or 1800 198 205 (Country Callers)


Albany Regional Hospital (08) 9892 2222
Gascoyne Public Health Unit (08) 9941 0560
Geraldton Population Health Unit (08) 9956 1985
Kalgoorlie-Bolder Population Health Unit (08) 9080 8200
South Hedland Community Health Service (08) 9158 9222
West Pilbara Community Health Service (Karratha) (08) 9143 2221


SARC services are confidential. Patients seen by SARC for an emergency consultation will be asked if they consent to their de-identified data being used for research purposes. All SARC research information is de-identified to remove the individual’s personal information or circumstances.

All SARC research is approved through formal King Edward Memorial Hospital Ethics Committee processes before commencing. 

Staff from the Clinical Forensic Medicine team have published the following original research articles in peer-reviewed journals in conjunction with the Curtin University School of Population Health: 

  1. Early evidence kits in sexual assault: an observational study of spermatozoa detection in urine and other forensic specimens. Forensic Sci Med Pathol. DOI 10.1007/s12024-014-9562-7
  2. Non-fatal strangulation in sexual assault: a study of clinical and assault characteristics highlighting the role of intimate partner violence. J Forensic Legal Med 43 (2016) 1-7.
  3. Genital and anal injuries: a cross-sectional Australian study of 1266 women alleging recent sexual assault. Forensic Science International. 275 (2017): 195-202.
  4. Sexual assault and general body injuries: a detailed cross-sectional Australian study of 1163 women. Forensic Science International 279 (2017): 112-120.
  5. Male sexual assault: physical injury and vulnerability in 103 presentations. J Forensic Legal Med 58 (2018)145-151.
  6. Capturing sexual assault data: an information system designed by forensic clinicians and healthcare researchers. Health Information Management Journal (2017): 1-10. DOI: 10.1177/1833358316687575
  7. An internal SARC Research Governance Committee coordinates all requests for research projects from internal and external researchers. Prospective researchers can contact the Chair of the Research Committee to discuss potential research projects using through SARC.

Australian statistics


Sexual assault and sexual abuse are the most under reported criminal offences and therefore the most difficult to accurately analyse. However, the vast majority of available statistics show that women report incidents of sexual assault more than men, regardless of age. The Personal Safety Survey (2005a) undertaken by the Australian Bureau of Statistics found that in the 12 months prior to the survey, 1.3% (101,600) of Australian women were sexually assaulted, while 0.6% (42,300) of Australian men were sexually assaulted. Furthermore, 17.0% (362,400) of men had been sexually assaulted at least once since they were 15, while 16.8% (1,293,100) of women had at least one experience. Overall, 84% of all sexual assault victims were female, with the highest rate occurring in girls aged between 10 and 14 years, 516 per 100,000 females. Similarly, the highest rate for males was also between the ages of 10 and 14 years (88 per 100,000 relevant persons), followed by boys under 10 years old (70 per 100,000 relevant persons). Sexual assault victims younger than 10 years old consisted of 30% males and in older age groups males made up 15% or less of the population.


It is difficult to estimate the number of Aboriginal people who are sexually assaulted due to unreliable recording. However, the Australian Bureau of Statistics (2006) found that approximately 5.6% of sexual assault victims in New South Wales were Aboriginal, while 12.6% of sexual assault victims in Queensland were Aboriginal.


A report by the Australian Bureau of Statistics (2006) found that 65% of reported sexual assaults in 2005 occurred in private dwellings, followed by in the street/footpath (7%).

Characteristics of perpetrator

The Personal Safety Survey (Australian Bureau of Statistics, 2005a) found that the perpetrator in 75% of sexual assaults was known to the victim. Of these, two in five perpetrators (40.4%) were family members or friends. For male victims this figure increased to 43.7% compared to 39.0% for women. Women experienced sexual assault by another known person in 32.0% of cases and in 35.1% for men. A greater proportion of men (32.9%) experienced sexual assault by a stranger compared to women (21.8%).

Childhood abuse

More than a third (35.6%) of women who experienced sexual violence by a partner in 2005 were also sexually abused as a child (Australian Bureau of Statistics, 2005a). While almost three out ten men and women who were victims of sexual violence also experienced physical abuse as a child (26.7% and 27.7% respectively).


The Personal Safety Survey reports that in the 12 months prior to the survey, 19.0% (1,459,500) of women experienced harassment while 11.6% (864,300) of men were harassed. It was found that 7.9% (606,500) of women and 3.9% (291,100) of men had experienced indecent exposure. Another 9.6% (736,200) of women and 3.6% (267 600) of men had been touched sexually without consent.


Between 2004 and 2005, approximately 45% of sexual assault defendants found guilty in magistrates court received a custodial order, while 22% received a non-custodial monetary order (Australian Bureau of Statistics, 2005a). However, during the same period 74% of sexual assault defendants found guilty in higher courts received a custodial sentence.


Since 1995 the number of sexual assaults reported has been steadily increasing each year on average by 4% (Australian Institute of Criminology, 2006a). Sexual assaults appear to be reported most frequently between January to March and September to November, while April through to July show the least number of reported cases.

Sexual Abuse

The Personal Safety Survey (Australian Bureau of Statistics, 2005a) found that the majority (32.4%) of children under 15 years who have experienced sexual abuse are aged between 11 and 14 years. There does not appear to be a differentiation in gender (males 32.8% and females 32.3%). Furthermore, the perpetrator is usually a male relative other than the father (30.2%). When comparing male and female victims the perpetrator is usually a male relative other than the father for female victims (35.1%), but another known person (27.3%) for male victims.

Western Australian statistics

‘Turning the Corner 2007: Recent Crime Trends in Western Australia’ (Office of Crime Prevention, 2007) states that the rate of sexual assault in Western Australia has increased, and has been steadily increasing since 2004. There were 1,385 reported cases of sexual assault during 2003 and by the end of 2006 the number of reported cases increased to 1,786 (Australian Bureau of Statistics, 2006). However, between 1999 and 2003 the rate of reported sexual assaults was on a downward trend, with a decrease of 24% by the end of the period (Office of Crime Prevention, 2007). It has been suggested that the increase may not necessarily indicate that the number of sexual assaults committed has increased, but is due to the number of sexual assaults reported to the police. Furthermore, in 2004 the recording system used by police improved, allowing for more accurate recording of offence categories.

The average number of sexual assaults reported to police in the first six months of 2007 was higher than the number recorded the previous year (Office of Crime Prevention, 2007). Unlike the statistics that have been shown for the nation, there is little difference between genders. 1.7% of Western Australian females experienced sexual violence (includes sexual assault and sexual threats) in 2005, compared to 1.6% of males (Australian Bureau of Statistics, 2005a).


The SARC team includes people from a range of professional backgrounds:

  • Administration
  • Clinical psychologists
  • Doctors, including consultants from a number of specialties
  • Psychologists
  • Social workers

Our team is dedicated to providing the highest quality service possible to meet the needs of our clients.

SARC is an equal opportunity employer and our team is committed to having a supportive, harassment and discrimination free workplace.

If you are interested in becoming part of our team, contact SARC on (08) 6458 1820 or send your email enquiry to:

Medical employment

If you are a doctor and interested in learning more, or are thinking about joining the SARC clinical forensic medicine team, please call (08) 6458 1820 and ask to speak with the head of clinical forensic medicine.

SARC doctors receive basic education in the field of clinical forensic medicine under the supervision of a senior doctor. Our training programme allows staff to develop their skills in forensic examination, injury documentation and sexual assault care.

Therapy employment

All counsellors and therapists employed at SARC have a tertiary qualification in a designated counselling field and are eligible for registration with their professional association. If you would like more information about joining the therapy team, please call (08) 6458 1820 and ask to speak with the senior clinical psychologist coordinator.

Please be aware that SARC does not utilise the services of volunteers.