Care Center for sexually abused children & special needs adults
Restoring dignity, empowering survivors and promoting healing
Since 1991, the Care Center at Edward Hospital has provided medical care in a calm and caring environment for children, teens and special needs adults who were, or may have been, sexually abused.
Our compassionate and knowledgeable staff uses a warm and empowering approach to restore your child’s sense of dignity and well-being.
The Care Center at Edward serves children and their families in Naperville, Elmhurst, Plainfield and the surrounding communities. You do not need to be a current patient of Edward-Elmhurst Health to use this program.
How we help
We are deeply committed to restoring a sense of well-being and dignity to patients and families. Children who come into an exam feeling worried or ashamed about their bodies are reassured that they are healthy and perfect.
Since self-image and a healthy sense of self are so closely tied to future health, we aim to decrease the trauma of a difficult situation and create an experience that is both therapeutic and beneficial. Children who come in feeling frightened or ashamed often leave feeling confident, with a new sense of hope.
Check-ups take place in a warm and child-friendly environment. Patients are in charge of their visit and allowed as many choices as possible, such as who will accompany them in the exam room, what toys to play with, or whether a therapy dog will be invited in.
Play therapy is used throughout, facilitated by a Child Life Specialist. No child is ever forced to undergo an exam. Instead, children are made to feel safe and protected, so they are comfortable with accepting care.
Meet the Care Center team
The team includes:
- Sangita Rangala, MD, FAAEM
- Janet McCants, RN, BSN
- Candace Hanson, RN, BSN
- Jessica Pietras, RN, BSN
What to expect during a Care Center visit
Patients receive a head-to-toe check, much like a routine physical, emphasizing overall health and the idea that every part of the body deserves dignity and respect.
The specialized portion of the exam is quick, pain-free, non-invasive, and tailored to each patient’s specific needs. If needed, evidence collection, medical testing, or treatment may be provided as well.
We encourage patients and their families to ask questions and express any concerns or fears they may have during their visit, and we’ll take as much time as needed discuss them. Issues of virginity and sexual orientation are addressed when appropriate. We’ll also recommend additional resources and support, if needed.
When their needs are addressed gently, with respect and compassion, children, teens and special needs adults who have been sexually abused often respond in ways that are truly inspiring. They grow to become more resilient, more mature and stronger than anyone could ever imagine.
It is our privilege to help provide the answers and reassurance that patients and loved ones need. We believe that everyone we see is deserving and capable of a full and healthy recovery, and we are dedicated to being a part of that process.
Referrals and training
Because no two situations are exactly the same, we encourage patients and/or families to call us so we can talk through their specific situation before making an appointment.
Concerned family members or friends can also make a referral to the Care Center, as well as schools, social service agencies, law enforcement representatives, healthcare professionals, child advocacy centers, and patients themselves.
Area law enforcement and social service agencies can benefit from our staff's expertise by attending the Care Center’s community education and professional training programs.
A part of the community
Special thanks to the Exchange Club of Naperville, Topfer Family Foundation, Tellabs Foundation, Alfred Bersted Foundation, Walter & Edith Best Foundation, Naperville Jaycees and the many other generous contributors whose continued support and funding have made the Care Center services possible.
For more information or to make an appointment or referral to the Care Center, please call 630-527-3288.