Hospital ERs to screen patients for signs of trafficking

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(Source: Saiyood Srikamon via 123RF) (Source: Saiyood Srikamon via 123RF)

A hospital chain with several hospitals in Arizona says is taking steps to counter human trafficking.

Dignity Health says it has trained staff at three hospitals in the Phoenix area to look for indicators of possible human and that it has implemented mandatory screening in emergency rooms and obstetrics departments.

San Francisco-based Dignity says the training has been conducted at St. Joseph's Hospital and Medical Center in Phoenix, Chandler Regional Medical Center and Mercy Gilbert Medical Center.

[MAP: The hospitals]

According to Dignity, so-called "red flags" of trafficking include homelessness, discrepancies between reported and apparent ages, lack of identification and a dominating or controlling companion who refuses to leave the patient alone.

[RELATED: Documentary taking on sex-trafficking premieres in Arizona]

[RELATED: Phoenix officials raise awareness about human trafficking with new PSA]

Dignity says trafficking victims who are identified will be referred to community agencies for support and assistance.

[RELATED: Trooper who rescued teen from sex trafficking explains what happened]

PDF: About teen sex trafficking (from Arizona State University)

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