Aim and objectives. Although many international sources in literature describe the treatment regimes for the management of adult female rape survivors, very few actually evaluate if the care that is implemented, are beneficial and supportive towards an optimal level of health. The researcher initiated this study to specifically determine what the experiences of adult female rape survivors were with regards to the management they received from health care workers in the emergency care environment. This information that was gathered was then incorporated into the writing of recommendations for health care services towards the improvement of patient-centred care. Method. A qualitative phenomenological methodology guided the research process in which ten semi-structured voluntary interviews was held with adult female rape survivors. This study was conducted in a private hospital in Gauteng, South Africa, which is at the top of the international statistics list for the incidence of rape. Findings. Patient management with regards to accessibility to health care services, the forensic examination and the use of medications proved to be a major concern. Participants in this study emphasized the value and importance of the physical presence of family members or significant others. A positive attitude from these support-givers improved the patient’s psychological state, memory and co-operation. Prolonged waiting times in all areas of management contributed to an increased level of anxiety, where as the prompt and competent interventions by empathetic multi-disciplinary team members had improved patient satisfaction. Various patient responses after the rape incident warranted that minimal, but yet effective and professional health care workers be involved in rape survivor management. Confidentiality and honest, effective communication that is based on patient preference, should guide all interventions. Conclusion. The medical management of adult female rape survivors in this hospital compared favorably to international standards, however, the need to improve the level of specific patient-centred care exists in order to ultimately facilitate a better quality of service provision. Copyright
Dissertation (MCur)--University of Pretoria, 2009.