Trauma-Informed Care

Trauma-Informed Care

What is trauma and why is it important?

Trauma results from experiencing physically or emotionally harmful or life-threatening events or circumstances that overwhelm a person’s ability to cope over time. These experiences cause lasting adverse effects on a person’s functioning and mental, physical, social, emotional, or spiritual well-being.

Trauma is broader than a single type of experience, like warfare, or a single clinical diagnosis, like Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder. Trauma may arise from a host of challenging experiences, from Adverse Child Experiences (ACEs) to emergent crises like the COVID-19 pandemic, to accumulated trauma resulting from historical, interpersonal, and systemic racism and discrimination. A trauma-informed and healing-centered approach can encourage caretakers, service providers, and community members to lead with empathy in order to support those who have experienced trauma to heal. 

COACH’s efforts align with the growing recognition that addressing trauma is a priority in Pennsylvania, including the Governor’s Office of Advocacy and Reform and the “Trauma-Informed PA: A Plan to Make Pennsylvania a Trauma-Informed, Healing-Centered State.”

Project Framework 

COACH seeks to create healing-centered care environments in partner institutions through the following strategies:

Convene an Advisory Group of local and national experts to develop recommendations for trauma-informed and healing-centered practice, including establishing common standards for staff training, care and service delivery, and supportive infrastructure, resources, and policies.

Support COACH member health systems in assessing, planning, implementing, and evaluating trauma-informed practices that align with standards recommended by the Advisory Group.

Create an ongoing forum for shared learning across COACH member institutions as they engage in this challenging work of culture change.

We’re just getting started! Click here to learn how you can get involved at your institution.