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  1. Pasqualone, Georgia MSFS, MSFN, RN, CFN, FABFN
  2. Michel, Christine PhD, BSc, RN, FNC-AP, DABFN


Violence has been identified as one of the leading public health hazards of our time. The majority of the victims of violence are being seen in emergency departments and critical care areas. This compels today's nurse to be educated in the proper recognition, interpretation, collection, documentation, and photo-documentation of the ramifications of violence and the associated forensic evidence. The categorization of these patients should be determined by the critical care nurse. Categorical determinations will ensure that the nurse develops a systematic, algorithmic management plan for any client with potential forensic implications associated with their care. It will also assist the nurse in recognizing the mandated reporting that must be completed in certain instances. The additional benefit is to determine what educational needs are required by the critical care nurse staff to posit the forensic population; and, to consider what future research must be accomplished in order to better serve this unique clientele.