Emotions…many people try to avoid emotions, especially in a professional setting. When it comes to medicine, emotions and providing emotional support shouldn’t be avoided. 


Using the DEF Protocol as a guide, doctors and nurses can support their pediatric patients and family cope with the emotional aspects of an illness diagnosis or injury. The E is for Emotional Support section of the DEF Protocol guides doctors and nurses as they: 


Supporting Emotional Needs



Imagining how this happens in everyday practice might seem difficult. But providing trauma informed emotional support doesn’t need to be elaborate or time consuming. Dr. Eisenburg shares a patient reaction to her lack of empathy and emotional support, highlighting the simple gestures that would have helped: 


She suggested even just a small gesture of offering her a quiet place to call her husband or walking her to the check-out would have been helpful.


These small, simple gestures mean a lot to patients and their families. Dr. Eisenburg continues, expressing just how little time is needed to make a lasting impact:


She opened my eyes to my impact and how I needed to change, to be more empathic and aware of my patients’ needs especially in the midst of a crisis. Despite working in a busy office, taking an extra moment with her would not have impacted my other patients, but it would have made a world a difference to her.


For doctors and nursing interested in learning more about how to provide trauma informed emotional support for pediatric patients and families, register for the  free E is for Emotional Support: Who and What Does Your Patient Need Now? Course. Then join in the discussion on Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest to learn more incorporating trauma informed practices into daily routine patient care.