What is trauma-informed care and how is it implemented in youth healthcare settings?

Trauma-informed care is a term that people working in youth mental healthcare are likely to be familiar with but may struggle to define. Trauma-informed care can seem conceptual rather than practical, and definitions of trauma-informed care often vary. This can make it difficult to pinpoint what it should look like in youth healthcare settings, and what policymakers, service managers, and staff should be doing to support its implementation.

This clinical practice point supports individuals managing and working within outpatient and community-based youth healthcare settings to:

• understand what trauma-informed care is

• identify the core principles of trauma-informed care as applicable within their work setting

• identify how trauma-informed care can be operationalised in their work setting at an organisational level and in clinical practice.

This clinical practice point is relevant to all staff (e.g. administrative, management, and clinical staff) working with young people (aged 12–25) in: emergency services, child and adolescent services, primary care, outpatient/community-based mental health, and counselling services.

Inpatient and residential settings (e.g. out-ofhome care, residential treatment programs, and forensic settings) are not specifically covered in this clinical practice point. While broad concepts may be applicable, there are different considerations for implementing trauma-informed care within these settings.