Forensic Nursing with Leah

EP 149: Forensic Nursing with Leah

Forensic nursing is an exciting area of our profession that few are aware of. If you are interested in working with victims of crimes and helping solve cases, it could be an opportunity you should not miss. But what is forensic nursing? How do you become one?

All nursing areas are enjoyable to work in. If you enjoy the thrill and excitement of the Emergency Room, you can be an ER nurse.

Nurses who are into labor and delivery nursing can become Nurse-midwives. The list goes on and on – there is always something to do for those in this medical profession.

Forensic nursing is one of the best positions to work in as a nurse if you enjoy helping others in an up-close and personal manner, and in this episode, we would like to introduce our guest Leah Helmbrecht.

She has been a registered nurse for 12.5 years and is currently working as a Forensic Nurse Examiner and Sexual Assault Nurse Examiner.

Questions for Our Guest:

  1. Can you give us a background about yourself and your nursing experience?
  2. What made you decide to become a Forensic Nurse/Sexual assault nurse examiner (SANE)?
  3. How do you become a SANE?
  4. What are some common misconceptions about sexual assault victims, and why do you think they exist? 
  5. What is the role of an FNE/SANE? 
  6. What is the hardest part of being a SANE? 
  7. What is the Neurobiology of Trauma? 
  8. What is rape-induced paralysis?
  9. What is secondary victimization? 

Here’s the full episode of this awesome discussion that we had with Leah:

If you want to catch Leah on social media, you can check out her Tiktok and Instagram @offtheclocknurse. Check it out!


0:00 Introduction
0:55 Cup of Nurses Introduction
2:47 Episode Introduction
3:05 Guest Introduction: Leah Helmbrecht
3:45 Leah’s Operating Room Experience
5:08 How does traveling OR nursing work?
6:33 Why Leah Switched from OR Nurse to SANE (Sexual Assault Nurse Examiner)
10:19 Day-to-day Activities of a SANE Nurse
18:33 How long do the psychological effects of sexual assault last?
22:00 Misconceptions About Sexual Assault Victims
28:15 Potential Changes to Improve the Outcomes of Sexual Assault Cases
38:27 How does rape-induced paralysis happen?
48:15 How to Become a SANE (Sexual Assault Nurse Examiner)?
51:26 Is SANE a specialty in forensic nursing?
52:26 Where can people find Leah Helmbrecht?

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