SuperBowl 50 and Health Care

Super Bowl 50 and Health Care

Did you know that perhaps as many as 30% of trafficked persons who show up in hospital emergency rooms are not being recognisuperbowl3 (1)zed as victims by the doctors and nurses treating them?  We know that large sporting events attract greater numbers of pimps offering trafficked persons, female and male, as prostitutes. While Super Bowl 50 fever in the Bay Area continues to gear up, many medical facilities and health centers are coming up with better ways to both recognize possible victims and offer options for help.

The Dominican Sisters have been at the forefront of health care in California and Nevada for over 100 years. We have been a part of St. Joseph’s in Stockton since 1898. Today, as a part of the Dignity Health system’s response to addressing human trafficking, St Joseph’s Community Grant program awarded the Women’s Center Youth & Family Services, in partnership with the Stockton Police Department and District Attorney’s office, a significant grant to provide training about the issue to service providers. Sister Abby Newton, OP, at St. Joseph’s Medical Center, says, “Our congregation has studied this issue in depth and we have taken a corporate stance to actively work against this form of modern day slavery. I am very proud of the work that Dignity Health, St. Joseph’s, and our community partners are doing in this critical area of human rights.”

superbowl4 (1)At another Dignity Health facility in Las Vegas, San Martin Campus of St. Rose Dominican Hospitals, Sister Mary Keiffer, OP,  Vice-President of Mission Integration, explains that training emergency staff to recognize patients who may be a trafficked victim is key.  For example, emergency department personnel will give a “shoe card” to a person who may be a victim. This card, small enough to slip into a patient’s shoe, has contact information to get help. Often a perpetrator may accompany a victim to the emergency department so that neither staff nor victim are free to discuss the real source of his or her  injuries.



For further information on the Dignity Health project to combat human trafficking, go to .