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  • Trauma-Informed Care

    Trauma-informed care  (TIC) is not a specific course or program but is rather an overarching principle of care for all patients.  This principle accounts for a wide variety of personal, community, historical or societal trauma that may have been inflicted on an individual, and how to avoid re-traumatization in our interactions with patients.

    In individuals who have experienced individual, societal, or historic adverse experiences, their stress reaction may be heightened, and their responses may be different than expected in stressful or painful situations, such as physical trauma.  Trauma-informed care recognizes this traumatic history in individuals and seeks to protect individuals from additional trauma that is compounded in the healthcare experience.  There are 4 “R”s to trauma-informed care:  Realize that trauma affects individuals and populations, Recognize the signs of trauma,  Respond appropriately to trauma,  and resist re-traumatization. 

    Trauma-informed care is, then, a multifaceted framework aimed at understanding and appropriately responding to the impact trauma has on survivors as well as care providers.  The core principles of the trauma-informed clinician are based on establishing safety, predictability, and collaboration with the patient,  enhancing awareness and assessing the patient’s impact of their traumatic history, while maintaining self-awareness of stress and trauma reactions.  All programs aimed at providing social support and decreasing violence should have individuals who are trained in trauma-informed practices, seek to create trauma-informed systems in which patients are collaborators in their care, and create environments that are safe and effective to prevent re-traumatization of those affected by violence.


    Educational Tools/Resources

    • Suggested Book: “The Deepest Well” by Nadine Burke-Harris
    • Healthcare Toolbox for Trauma-Informed Hospital Systems:




    • Strategies for Trauma Centers to Address the Root Causes of Violence: Recommendations from the Improving Social Determinants to Attenuate Violence (ISAVE) Workgroup of the American College of Surgeons Committee on Trauma


    • Trauma-informed care: recognizing and resisting re-traumatization in health care



    Links to Other Resources

    • Trauma-Informed Care Implementation Resource Center


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