Professionals

The Bridge is here 24/7, 365 days a year to offer you information and guidance if someone discloses to you that they have been raped or sexually assaulted

To make a referral to The Bridge, please click the button on the right hand side.

For advice and guidance, please see the information below.

The information provided is for reference only, please be aware that guidelines and pathways can change quickly, you can always ring The Bridge directly for information and guidance 24/7, 365 days a year. Our telephone number is always answered by one of our specialist team.

The relevance of some resources below will depend on your profession and the context in which you might receive a disclosure.

Understanding medical examinations for child sexual abuse concerns - CSA Centre Video

The Centre of expertise on child sexual abuse have produced a video resource about the role and purpose of a medical examination in situations where child sexual abuse has been disclosed or suspected. Please see below for information provided by the Centre:

The practitioner resource

Dealing effectively with a problem as pervasive and important as child sexual abuse needs everyone with a stake in working to prevent child sexual abuse to get involved.

This evidence-informed film will help professionals from multi-agency backgrounds better understand the role and purpose of a medical examination in situations where child sexual abuse has been disclosed or suspected. It is applicable to any setting in which children may be seen for a medical examination, and is relevant to both recent and non-recent cases of CSA.

The resource aims to help professionals and practitioners involved in advising, referring and supporting children and families make decisions and explain processes to children and families.

This video has been produced by the Centre of expertise on child sexual abuse and all credit goes to them. Please visit their website for further information on this resource: https://www.csacentre.org.uk/knowledge-practice/medical-examinations/

Timescales for immediate medical care

Guidance for professionals when caring for a patient who has disclosed that they have been raped or sexually assaulted

Educational Resources

There are a number of great educational resources available to help discuss sex, consent and relationships with young people, such as:

The above is just a very small selection, however if you need advice, information or support on talking about our service, and what we do, to young people, get in touch and we’ll be able to answer any of your queries or questions.

Training for professionals

The Bridge can provide training to professionals on responding to disclosures of rape or sexual assault. If this is something you are interested in, please do not hesitate to email ubh-tr.thebridgecanhelp@nhs.net and one of the team will be in touch.

If you have bespoke training needs, please do not hesitate to contact us and one of the team will be in touch to discuss how we can help you.

If you would like a member of the team to attend one of your team meetings or staff training sessions and talk about our service, this may be something we can facilitate, contact us and we can discuss more.

When did this happen?

Less than 8 days ago?

More than 8 days ago?

your-choicesYour choices

I do not want to report to the police

  • Call The Bridge on 0117 342 6999
  • A Crisis Worker will listen to what has happened to you and explain how we can help
  • We can arrange for a doctor or nurse to examine you to check you are ok and, if we’re in the forensic time-frame, look for forensic evidence
  • We will store forensic samples for 2 years. If you decide to report to the police the samples can be used as evidence in their investigation
    You can have an examination even if you have already washed, although there will be more DNA evidence on your body if you feel able to wait until after an examination
  • We will make sure that your sexual health is looked after
  • We can give you emergency contraception if needed
  • We will offer you practical and emotional support, including counselling.

*forensic time-frames can vary.  Call The Bridge 0117 342 6999.

I want to report to the police

  • Call the police on 101 or 999.
  • A specially trained officer will come to speak with you.
  • The officer may call The Bridge to arrange for a doctor or nurse to examine you to check you are ok and, if we’re in the forensic time-frame, look for forensic evidence.
  • You can have an examination even if you have already washed, although there will be more DNA evidence on your body if you feel able to wait until after an examination.
  • We will make sure that your sexual health is looked after.
  • We can give you emergency contraception if needed.
  • After you leave The Bridge an Independent Sexual Violence Adviser can support you with the police investigation.
  • We will offer you practical and emotional support including counselling.

*forensic time-frames can vary.  Call The Bridge 0117 342 6999.

I do not want to report to the police

  • Call The Bridge on 0117 342 6999.
  • A Crisis Worker will listen carefully and supportively to understand what happened to you, when it happened and what your situation is now.
  • The Crisis Worker will explain what support is available to you and help you to decide on your next steps.
  • You do not have to tell the Crisis Worker your name or contact details unless you choose to.
  • If you do give us your name and contact details, the Crisis Worker will help to arrange any support that you decide you want.
  • The support we can arrange includes sexual health care, advocacy and counselling.

I want to report to the police

  • Call the police on 101 or 999.
  • A specially trained officer will come to speak with you.
  • The officer will give The Bridge your details and ask us to contact you to offer you support.
  • The officer will arrange for you to complete a video interview. An Independent Sexual Violence Advisor can support you when you meet with the police for this interview. If you have not heard from an Independent Sexual
  • Violence Advisor before your interview, ask the police why not.
  • Other support that The Bridge can arrange includes sexual health care and counselling.

Experiences

All the staff have been so friendly and welcoming, and very kind. I was supported from the very first contact, and overall, could not have gone through the past few years without this wonderful service.  A major asset to our NHS service, and one that I hope is able to reach as many individuals as need it.