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Trauma-informed care: a deeper understanding of patients' lives

Kathy Oxtoby looks at how trauma-informed training at Bradford District Care NHS Foundation Trust is benefiting healthcare practitioners and the population they serve

Most healthcare practitioners will have treated patients who have experienced trauma. It is also likely they will have been traumatised themselves – particularly during the pandemic, when the NHS was facing its worst crisis since the service began, and practitioners were dealing with the traumatic impact of COVID-19 on a daily basis.

Not all healthcare practitioners are aware of, or understand how to manage their own trauma, or that of their patients. However, a growing number of healthcare organisations are recognising the value of trauma-informed care as an approach to support both patients and staff.

‘Trauma-informed care involves caring for people based on an understanding of the trauma and adversity which individuals may have had from childhood, and which has an impact on their physical and mental health,’ says Sue Francis, workforce development lead, trauma-informed care at Bradford District Care NHS Foundation Trust.

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