What Do Clinicians Caring for Children Need to Know about Pediatric Medical Traumatic Stress and the Ethics of Trauma-Informed Approaches?
AMA Journal of Ethics, August 2017
Medical experiences can be frightening and traumatic for children. Ill and injured children can experience pediatric medical traumatic stress-psychological and physiological distress responses related to their medical event and subsequent medical treatment experiences-which can lead to symptoms of posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and suboptimal health outcomes. Trauma-informed care provides a framework for acknowledging, addressing, and mitigating the risks of psychological trauma associated with medical treatment experiences and is congruent with the ethical principles of respect for autonomy, beneficence, nonmaleficence, and justice. Health care systems and professionals are encouraged to apply the principles of trauma-informed care to address the effects of pediatric medical traumatic stress.
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