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Develop public health approach to trauma

Trauma is a public health crisis and thus demands a public health approach that strives to: mitigate the impacts of trauma; bolster protective factors to build resilience, reduce retraumatization, and thwart the cascading and compounding consequences of trauma; and create the conditions and context that reduce the likelihood of (and ideally prevent) trauma from occurring in the first place. Joining leading-edge knowledge related to the social determinants of health with a trauma-informed lens can serve as a roadmap to increasing individual, collective, and systemic wellness.


  • Improve intergenerational health and wellbeing across the life span for all by expanding access to trauma-informed medical and health care

  • Attain a universal precaution for trauma through efforts to enhance public education and awareness

  • Mandate standards for trauma-informed content to be integrated into training, professional development, and licensure acquisition requirements for those within the medical and healthcare field

  • Require universities and other higher educational institutions with degree programs geared toward educating individuals who intend to work in medical and/or healthcare-related jobs to incorporate trauma content into the curriculum to receive accreditation with relevant entities

  • Create financial and regulatory structures to incentivize the use of trauma-informed screening, assessment, treatment, and referral procedures in primary healthcare settings to promote earlier detection of trauma symptomology and impacts, increase patient education and empowerment, and facilitate patient access to holistic support, as needed

  • Maximize connections and collaboration between organizations, systems, agencies, and other entities that provide or administer support related to medical and/or healthcare and other community-based agencies to enhance continuity and coordination of care among those who have experienced trauma

  • Increase competency for intercultural practice, including emphasizing awareness of the unique indicators of culturally-bound/locality-specific manifestations of traumatic stress with attention to community diversity and demographics to thwart misdiagnosis/inappropriate treatment planning

  • Award funding to build “one-stop shops” combining the delivery of multiple health and human services to increase equitable access to quality services in rural, urban, tribal, and other underserved, under-resourced areas afflicted by transportation-related and other barriers to care

  • Expand coverage of traditional healing practices across diverse cultures under public healthcare programs (e.g., Medicaid, Medicare, etc.)

  • Fund research to continue discovery around the relationship between trauma across the lifespan and adverse health outcomes as well as illustrate the advantages of trauma-informed approaches to promote recovery, positive health outcomes, and advance health equity

  • Provide education/training to medical and healthcare professionals on historical injustices inflicted on specific populations by such systems and engage in intentional efforts to repair harm and restore trust

  • Increase training and resources related to addressing the emotional and psychological impacts of experiencing serious illnesses and physical health issues among medical and healthcare providers

  • Increase trauma-informed home visiting programs for primary medical care to promote prevention and bolster connections to wraparound services among trauma-impacted individuals and families

  • Engage individuals, groups, families, and communities with lived experience in devising, implementing, and evaluating trauma-informed healthcare systems

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