TraumaInformed Care Are We There Yet? By Pam Greene, PhD, RN Director, TNA Board
DO YOU PROVIDE TRAUMA-INFORMED CARE? When this question was posed to two dozen highly skilled, well-educated nurses from a variety of practice specialties, answers were unsurprisingly mixed. Several nurses clearly understood what trauma-informed care (TIC) meant and described how TIC had been incorporated into their respective practices. Others assumed â€œtraumaâ€? was limited to caring for people with extreme physical injuries. Some nurses thought TIC related specifically to understanding and providing care to people with posttraumatic stress disorder. More than half of the nurses questioned indicated they had never heard of TIC and were not sure if they were using TIC in practice.
Trauma-Informed Care is a form of care that takes the whole person into account. The framework incorporates the realization of how widespread trauma is, knowledge about different kinds of trauma, and how trauma can manifest. DEFINITIONS AND DESCRIPTIONS
Integrated health care has been implemented slowly and inconsistently (Beeber, 2018), making it hard for nurses to even become familiar with TIC.
Trauma can be defined in many ways. For the purpose of TIC implementation, trauma is an event or series of events that involve a direct or perceived threat of death, severe bodily harm, or psychological injury that the person finds deeply distressing at the time. Trauma can also be experienced by being a witness to trauma, such as when a child sees domestic violence. Trauma can occur at any point in the lifespan (Huckshorn & Lebel, 2013; TIC Resource Guide, 2017).
The first step toward implementing TIC universally is understanding what implementation involves and making good use of existing resources for implementation.
TIC is a form of care that takes the whole person into account. The framework incorporates the realization of how widespread trauma is, knowledge about
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different kinds of trauma, and how trauma can manifest. The TIC-approach to healthcare is strengths-based and congruent with person-centered care: collaborative, supportive, and focused on helping the person reclaim control (Isobel & Delgado, 2017; National Center for TIC, 2015). TIC can be implemented in any healthcare setting.
BACKGROUND In 1985, a doctor by the name of Vincent Felitti tried to get at the root cause of participants dropping out of a weightloss program when they were on a path to success. He ultimately found a link to 10 types of adverse childhood experi-