Soft Hospital Rooms Introduced in Ontario

At the Mackenzie Richmond Hill Hospital in Ontario, a new type of room has been developed. The “soft” room was designed with victims of sexual assault, domestic violence, human trafficking, and other types of abuse in mind.

The theory behind the soft room is that victims have to deal with quite a bit in the hospital in terms of the initial trauma, examination, and follow-up treatments. The last thing a victim needs is to follow the event and ER trip up with a trip to the local police precinct.

These special “soft” rooms are designed to be comfortable places for victims, many still in shock from the events they’ve experienced. The rooms are nicely furnished, warm, and soundproof, ensuring safety. While one investigator conducts an interview, another can record it in an adjoining room, reducing some of the stress of seeing recording equipment.

Having these rooms in the hospital does a couple of things. It ensures victims and witnesses are interviewed faster. They’re also not exposed to each other, which means they’re not contaminated. These room are also increasing the likelihood that the interviews will take place at all, as many victims change their minds about going to the precinct after leaving the hospital.

These rooms are part of an overall program, too. They are accompanied by nurses who are specially trained to deal with trauma and assault. They not only help with injuries, but can make sure victims have safety plans before they leave.


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