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Trauma-Informed Care

Trauma is a near universal experience of individuals with behavioral health problems. According to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Office on Women’s Health, 55-99 percent of women in substance use treatment and 85-95 percent of women in the public mental health system report a history of trauma, with the abuse most commonly having occurred in childhood.

The Adverse Childhood Experiences study conducted by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and Kaiser Permanente, is one of the largest investigations ever conducted to assess associations between childhood maltreatment and later-life health and well-being. Almost two-thirds of the study participants reported at least one adverse childhood experience of physical or sexual abuse, neglect, or family dysfunction, and more than one of five reported three or more such experiences.

Trauma-Informed, Resilience-Oriented Approaches

Escalating violence. Increasingly complex community and client demands. The mounting casualties of the opioid epidemic. Diminished funding with increased needs. A compromised workforce plagued by compassion fatigue.

We know the toll of trauma. We see it every day. But what can we do to rise above these pressures and develop the skills we need to address trauma and nurture resilience?

The National Council’s 9th Trauma-Informed, Resilience-Oriented Approaches Learning Community is a year-long initiative that connects organizations with trauma experts and peer organizations. With two in-person summits, a series of coaching calls, webinars and a listserv of peers and experts at their fingertips, participants develop the resources that respond to their needs and the needs of their communities.

Applications for the 9th Learning Community closed on Friday, December 21, 2018. For more information, view the Request for Applications or watch a recording of the informational webinar.

Learn more about learning communities and consulting opportunities.

A Revolutionary Approach

Oprah Winfrey and 60 Minutes underscored the impact of trauma in our world. It’s time we recognize the importance of trauma-informed care. Read more on the response from our President and CEO, Linda Rosenberg.

Be Trauma-Informed

An individual’s experience of trauma impacts every area of human functioning — physical, mental, behavioral, social and spiritual. The ACE Study revealed that the economic costs of untreated trauma-related alcohol and drug abuse alone were estimated at $161 billion in 2000. The human costs are incalculable.

Trauma is shrouded in secrecy and denial and is often ignored. But when we don’t ask about trauma in behavioral health care, harm is done or abuse is unintentionally recreated by the use of forced medication, seclusion or restraints.

The good news is that trauma is treatable — there are many evidence-based models and promising practices designed for specific populations, types of trauma and behavioral health manifestations.

Watch this video on trauma-informed care in a nutshell:

Trauma-Informed Primary Care

The National Council is leading the three-year initiative, Trauma-Informed Primary Care: Fostering Resilience and Recovery, to educate health care providers on the importance of trauma-informed approaches in the primary care setting. Learn more.


Check out further resources on trauma under Trauma-Informed Consulting as well as our shareable infographics on Language Matters on How to Manage Trauma and Why Trauma Matters in Primary Care.