If you are a crime victim, we can help. The Mount Sinai Beth Israel Victim Services Program, under the auspices of the Department of Social Work, is a comprehensive program dedicated to assisting victims of crime. This includes victims of sexual assault, domestic violence, physical assault, adult survivors of childhood sexual abuse, and incest.
We offer a range of services to a culturally diverse population of survivors and clients at various stages of recovery, from the immediate crises following a trauma, to the next day, week, or even years later. Our services include:
- Individual short-term psychotherapy
- Crisis intervention
- Information, referrals, and advocacy
If you have been recently assaulted, you may come into the Emergency Department (ED) located at First Avenue at 16th Street. We offer the following services:
- Performing Sexual Assault Forensic Examinations (SAFE), including evidence collection
- Having an advocate/social worker present
- Taking photos of any injuries
- Providing a medical exam and treatment for potential HIV exposure, sexually transmitted infections, and the morning after pill
- Offering a drug-facilitated Sexual Assault evidence collection (DFSA) kit
- Assisting with contacting the New York Police Department (NYPD) to make a police report
Frequently Asked Questions
If you come to the ED due to an assault, we are here to help. Below are some Frequently Asked Questions to help you prepare for your ED visit:
Question: What type of medical treatment will I be offered in the ED?
Answer: In cases of domestic violence/ intimate partner violence, we offer a medical exam, including any medically indicated X-rays or other diagnostic tests. In the case of a recent sexual assault, we offer a medical exam and a Forensic Rape Exam by a trained Sexual Assault Forensic Examiner. Should you wish to file a police report while in the ED, we will arrange to have the evidence collected from the rape exam released to the police, with your consent. We can do this at the time of the exam, or we can hold it securely, should you decide to make a report in the future. We will offer you various types of preventive medications, such as Plan B, STI medications, and HIV prophylaxis.
Question: What is the role of the social worker or advocate?
Answer: Social workers and volunteer advocates offer support, make referrals, and provide advocacy with ED staff, NYPD, and family members and friends.
Question: How long will my visit in the ED take?
Answer: It is difficult to estimate the length of time you may be in the Emergency Room. Generally, your visit can take anywhere between three to eight hours.
Question: Will I be billed for my visit?
Answer: No. The New York State Office of Victim Services (OVS) covers the cost of a rape exam following a sexual assault. Please contact Victim Services if you have any financial concerns.
Need Help Now? If you are in an unsafe situation, you may go to your nearest emergency room or call 911. If you would like to talk to a counselor or need information about emergency shelter, call 800-621-HOPE (4673) to be connected with Safe Horizons 24/7 Hotline. A counselor can provide crisis counseling, safety planning, and assistance in finding a shelter.
For information on New York State’s program that may provide financial reimbursement to crime victims, visit New York State Office of Victim Services.
Sexual Violence Resources
Domestic Violence/Intimate Partner Violence Resources
Legal Assistance, Crisis Counseling, and Case Management
- New York City Family Justice Centers (five Boroughs)
- New York City Mayor's Office to Combat Domestic Violence
Additional Community Based Agencies Serving Survivors of Sexual and Domestic Violence/Intimate Partner Violence
Mount Sinai Beth Israel Volunteer Advocate Program
Every year, the Mount Sinai Beth Israel Victim Services Program trains Volunteer Advocates to support survivors of sexual and domestic violence/intimate partner violence during their time in the emergency room.
Our Volunteer Advocate Program is certified by the New York State Department of Health. To be certified as an advocate, you will receive 40 hours of extensive training in crisis intervention, counseling, safety planning, and advocacy for survivors navigating both the medical and legal systems. Patients at Mount Sinai Beth Israel can request an advocate or social worker to help them in getting care. As a volunteer, you will provide patients with crisis counseling and follow-up resources to support them in their healing process.
The Role of the Volunteer Advocates
What are the requirements of the Volunteer Advocate role?
- To be at least 21 years of age
- Live within a 30-minute cab ride of the Mount Sinai Beth Israel Emergency Room
- Complete 40-hour training and commit to serving as an advocate for one year, covering three shifts per month.
Process of Becoming A Volunteer Advocate
Mount Sinai Beth Israel interviews applicants for the Volunteer Advocate Program from September to November, holding the 40-hour training in January. Applicants are required to submit an application and be available for an in-person interview in order to be considered for the program. As part of the Mount Sinai Health System, all applicants are required to meet the medical requirements of all volunteers at the hospital. If interested, please contact our Volunteer Coordinator at 212-420-2017 to learn more about applying.