Center for Injury Research and Prevention

Trauma-informed Care Training

doctor practices trauma-informed care training

Pediatric healthcare providers play a key role in preventing injury-related post-traumatic stress by providing trauma-informed care (TIC). Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia (CHOP) promotes a systems approach of trauma-informed care training using an evidence-based framework. This approach to trauma-informed care training for pediatric medical providers addresses barriers to routine integration of TIC into pediatric care, including lack of available training and unclear best practice guidelines. 

The Violence Prevention Initiative (VPI) at CHOP provides trauma-informed care consultation and training for staff in a range of settings (e.g., medical settings, schools, social agencies, and law enforcement).

Training in trauma-informed care should not take much additional time for hospital staff. When implemented well, it teaches doctors, nurses, and other healthcare providers to seamlessly integrate an understanding of traumatic stress in routine care to help patients cope with their emotional reactions to injury by:

  • taking steps to lessen the traumatic aspects of medical care
  • providing patients and families with basic information and support
  • screening for psychosocial risks.
  • educating patients and co-workers about traumatic stress reactions and sharing effective coping resources
“It makes me more aware of my patients’ emotional needs in addition to their physical needs.” 
- Trauma-informed care training participant

At CHOP, we are implementing trauma-informed care as part of our training goals. To implement trauma-informed care in pediatric hospitals, CHOP researchers recommend applying the Institute for Healthcare Improvement’s Framework for Spread with these guidelines based on best practices:

  • establish a leader to deliver the training
  • identify champions throughout the healthcare network
  • identify institutional assets and barriers
  • start small with groups best positioned to engage in TIC training, allow for natural growth
  • partner with departments/groups to meet their unique needs
  • use technology, such as webinars or learning links
  • integrate into existing trainings
  • incorporate “Train the Trainer”

Progress to Date

Since VPI's inception in 2013 through 2017, approximately 2,300 CHOP staff and 2,200 community members have been trained in TIC.

In 2017:

  • Approximately 500 CHOP staff (clinical and non-clinical) trained
    • Of these, 78 percent reported an increased understanding of TIC
  • Almost 1,000 external health care and community-based providers trained

Watch a webinar on how to implement trauma-informed care in the pediatric hospital setting.

Read the JAMA Pediatrics paper about the recommended framework for delivering TIC training.

Read the QI study about the evaluation of the initial application of the framework.