Understanding the 5 Core Values of Trauma Informed Care: A Guide for Care Providers

Understanding the 5 Core Values of Trauma Informed Care: A Guide for Care Providers

Trauma informed care is a treatment approach that acknowledges the role of trauma in an individual’s life, including the impact it has on their physical, emotional, and mental health. By taking a trauma informed approach, care providers can better understand and respond to the unique needs of individuals who have experienced trauma, ultimately improving their ability to heal and recover.

If you are a care provider, it’s essential to have a solid understanding of the five core values that underpin trauma informed care. These values are:


Safety is a critical aspect of trauma informed care. Care providers must provide a physically and emotionally safe environment for their patients, where they can trust that their needs will be met and their rights respected. This environment includes physical safety, emotional safety, and providing opportunities for empowerment and control.

For example, if a patient who has a history of trauma is struggling with a particular aspect of their care plan, care providers should empower them to discuss their needs and make decisions that are in their best interest. By doing so, care providers can build trust with their patients, promote feelings of safety, and ultimately reduce the risk of further trauma.

Trustworthiness and transparency

Trust is essential when providing trauma informed care. Care providers must be reliable, honest, and transparent in their communications with patients. This approach helps to build trust and credibility with patients, and makes them feel more comfortable and supported throughout their recovery.

For example, if a care provider is running behind schedule for an appointment, they should communicate the delay and provide a realistic time estimate for when the patient can expect to be seen. By doing so, the care provider shows they value the patient’s time and are trustworthy, which helps to build trust and rapport.

Peer support

Peer support is an essential aspect of trauma informed care. Patients benefit from interacting with others who have had similar experiences and can provide support and understanding. By incorporating peer support into therapy and treatment plans, care providers can encourage connection and socialization, which are crucial for recovery.

For example, care providers can connect patients with peer support groups or offer group therapy sessions where patients can discuss their experiences and support one another. These activities can help patients feel less isolated and develop a sense of belonging and support.

Cultural, historical, and gender issues

Trauma can impact individuals differently based on their cultural, historical, and gender backgrounds. Care providers must consider these factors when working with patients and adapt their approach accordingly. By being aware of these issues, care providers can provide better care and support to their patients.

For example, a care provider working with a patient from a minority community should be aware of the cultural norms and values that may impact the patient’s perception of care. By understanding these factors, care providers can adapt their approach to better meet the patient’s needs.

Collaboration and mutuality

Collaboration and mutuality are critical aspects of trauma informed care. Care providers and patients should work together as partners to create a care plan that meets the patient’s unique needs. Patients should have input and be involved in the decision-making process, and care providers must listen to and value their opinions.

For example, if a patient is struggling with a particular aspect of their care plan, care providers should work collaboratively with them to come up with a solution. By working together, care providers and patients can develop a plan that’s effective, realistic, and tailored to the patient’s needs.

In conclusion, understanding the five core values of trauma informed care is essential for care providers who work with individuals who have experienced trauma. By prioritizing safety, trust, peer support, cultural understanding, and collaboration, care providers can create an environment that promotes healing and recovery for their patients. By adapting their approach to meet the unique needs of each patient, care providers can make a significant difference in their patient’s lives.

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