Cross-Systems Trauma-Informed Care

Trauma-informed care is an organizational structure and treatment framework for understanding, recognizing and responding to all types of trauma. It focuses on physical, psychological and emotional safety, and helps survivors rebuild a sense of control and empowerment.

Sharing the same vision and purpose of the Texas Statewide Behavioral Health Strategic Plan (PDF), the Cross-Systems Trauma-Informed Care (CS-TIC) initiative provides a framework to advance a coordinated statewide approach in delivering behavioral health services that are accessible and timely.

Vision: A Texas behavioral health system is founded on being healing-centered, trauma-informed, and unified in a person-centered and family-focused approach.

Purpose: To develop a coordinated statewide approach for building a person-centered, trauma-informed behavioral health system that provides quality supports, services and care to Texans.

Systems Transformation

To fully integrate trauma-informed care and create a cultural shift regarding trauma, the Texas Health and Human Services Commission (HHSC) Office of Mental Health Coordination is transforming its CS-TIC system. This involves collaborating with other Texas state agencies receiving state funding for behavioral health training or services in advancing trauma-informed organizations, culture and services.

As part of the transformation, HHSC has established a Trauma Transformation Team with representatives from different divisions and departments within the agency. Team members are trauma champions who facilitate change within HHSC.

Addressing trauma from a systemwide perspective requires a multipronged public health approach involving public education and awareness, prevention and early identification, and effective trauma-specific assessment and treatment. Services must be provided in an organizational or community context that is trauma-informed.

Beginning in 2020, the CS-TIC Projects Committee collaborated with the South Southwest Mental Health Technology Transfer Center (SSW MHTTC) at the University of Texas at Austin to develop free trauma-informed care training modules for professionals seeking high-quality, in-depth training. Over several years, the committee helped develop a multi-session trauma-informed care training available at HealthEKnowledge.

Additionally, training modules and resources are available at the Mental Health Technology Transfer Center.