New Horizon Family Health Services has been selected to participate in the National Council for Behavioral Health’s Trauma-Informed, Resilience-Oriented Approaches Learning Community, a year-long initiative to ensure that organizations have the necessary tools and skills to assess and address the impact of trauma on the people they serve.
Fifteen human service organizations across the country are participating in the training for 2019-2020 which includes two in-person summits, a series of coaching calls, webinars and a listserv of peers and experts. Participants were selected through a competitive application process. New Horizon Family Health Services is one of two Federally Qualified Health Centers (FQHCs) selected for the initiative.
Traumatic life events and experiences, including Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACEs), can impact an individual’s health and social-emotional well-being and lead to adverse health outcomes including depression and anxiety, substance use disorder, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, obesity, diabetes and high risk sexual activity. Traumatic events include physical and sexual abuse, neglect, loss of a parent/caregiver due to death, abandonment, incarceration or divorce and exposure to violence and substance use.
“Trauma is often hidden in secrecy and shame,” said New Horizon Family Health Services Behavioral Health Director, Jennifer Schmucker. “When we shift our perspective to ask, ‘What happened to you’ rather than ‘What is wrong with you?’ we help create a community of hope, healing and recovery.”
The initiative’s objectives include increasing awareness of the impact of trauma, developing a trauma-informed and resilient workforce, creating a safe environment that avoids re-traumatization and increasing consumer resilience, engagement and involvement. To foster a trauma-informed, educated and responsive workforce, New Horizon Family Health Services has created a Core Implementation Team to develop a plan for delivering trauma-informed approaches throughout the organization.
“Integrating a trauma-informed approach into our policies, procedures and practices provides our staff with additional tools to recognize the signs of trauma in patients and further respond to the needs of the communities we serve,” said Regina M. Mitchell, New Horizon Family Health Services President and Chief Executive Officer.
The initiative builds on New Horizon Family Health Services’ integrated care approach connecting mental health care with primary care which has shown to improve emotional and physical health. Licensed clinical counselors and other staff work closely with the primary care medical team to develop a treatment plan to address each patient’s unique circumstances and needs.
To learn more about the National Council for Behavioral Health’s Trauma-Informed, Resilience-Oriented Approaches Learning Community, visit https://www.nationalcouncildocs.net/trauma-informed-care-learning-community.
Behavioral health services are provided for patients of all ages at all New Horizon Family Health Services medical office locations. Appointments can be made by calling 864-729-8330 or asking your New Horizon Family Health Services primary care doctor for a referral.