MSN 5550 Health Promotion: Prevention of Disease
Case Study Module 12
Instructions: Read the following case study and answer the reflective questions. Please provide
evidence-based rationales for your answers. APA, 7th ed. must be followed.
Deadline: Due by Saturday at 23:59 p.m.
CASE STUDY: Drug-Facilitated Sexual Assault: Jessica
Sexual assault includes any type of sexual activity to which an individual does not agree.
Because of the effects of some drugs, commonly called date rape drugs, victims may be
physically helpless, unable to refuse, or even unable to remember what happened. Jessica, a
16-year-old high school sophomore, expresses concern to the school nurse practitioner that she
knows someone who might have had sex “without knowing it.” How can the nurse practitioner
answer these common questions?
1. What are date rape drugs and how can a person be unaware that such a drug has been
2. What can you do to protect yourself?
3. What do you do if you think you have been sexually assaulted?
4. What can you do when someone you care about has been sexually assaulted?
5. What role does a nurse practitioner play in the care of sexually assaulted patients,
particularly in the adolescent age group?
Date rape drugs are drugs that are used to facilitate sexual assault. These drugs can cause the victim to become disoriented, confused, and unable to resist or remember what happened. Commonly used drugs include gamma-hydroxybutyrate (GHB), Rohypnol (flunitrazepam), and ketamine. These drugs can be slipped into someone’s drink or food without their knowledge. Symptoms of drug-facilitated sexual assault can include confusion, memory loss, dizziness, and nausea. A person may not be aware that they have ingested a date rape drug because these drugs are often colorless, odorless, and tasteless.
There are several things that individuals can do to protect themselves from drug-facilitated sexual assault. These include:
Being aware of your surroundings and the people you are with
Watching your drink at all times and not leaving it unattended
Not accepting drinks from strangers or people you do not know well
If possible, bringing your own drinks to parties or events
Being cautious of people who are overly friendly or pushy with drinks or other offers
Not drinking to the point of losing control or consciousness
If a person thinks they have been sexually assaulted, they should seek medical attention immediately. They should go to the emergency department or a sexual assault center and not bathe, shower, or change clothes beforehand. The healthcare provider will conduct a physical examination and collect evidence, which can be important for legal proceedings. The victim should also consider reporting the assault to the police.
When someone you care about has been sexually assaulted, it is important to offer support and validation. Listen to them without judgment and believe what they say. Encourage them to seek medical attention and report the assault to the police, but respect their decisions if they choose not to do so. Offer to accompany them to medical appointments or counseling sessions, and help them find resources for support and healing.
Nurse practitioners play a critical role in the care of sexually assaulted patients, particularly in the adolescent age group. They can provide medical care and support, collect evidence, and offer referrals for counseling and other resources. They can also provide education and prevention strategies to help reduce the risk of sexual assault. It is important for nurse practitioners to be knowledgeable about the signs and symptoms of drug-facilitated sexual assault, as well as the legal and ethical considerations involved in caring for victims of sexual assault.