Trauma Stewardship – The Science and Soul of Early Life Adversity

Presented by Mary E. Coughlin, MS, NNP, RNC-E

Access Pass Member Exclusive

Course Description

This course will introduce the learner to the biology of toxic, traumatic stress along with short-term and long-term consequences. However, it is not just the patients and their families that are impacted, but the clinicians as well. Trauma stewardship opens hearts and minds to heal the hurts that often go unnoticed and discover creative, evidence-based […]
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AdultPediatricOTPTSLPBrain InjuryFeeding and SwallowingLanguage DevelopmentMental HealthPediatric Brain Injury

Meet Your Presenter

Mary E. Coughlin is a global leader in neonatal nursing and has pioneered the concept of trauma informed, developmental care as a biologically relevant paradigm for infants, children, families, and professionals. A seasoned staff nurse, charge nurse, neonatal nurse practitioner, administrator, educator, coach and mentor, Ms. Coughlin has over 40 years of nursing experience beginning with 7 years of active military duty in the U.S. Air Force Nurse Corp and culminating with her current role as president and founder of Caring Essentials Collaborative. Ms. Coughlin is a published author with credits that include the seminal paper introducing the concept of core measures for developmentally supportive care, the 2011 Clinical Practice Guidelines for Age-Appropriate Care of the Premature and Critically Ill Hospitalized Infant for the National Association of Neonatal Nurses (NANN); Transformative Nursing in the NICU: Trauma-Informed, Age-Appropriate Care, First and 2nd Editions, and Trauma-Informed Care in the NICU: Evidence-Based Practice Guidelines for Transdisciplinary Neonatal Clinicians endorsed by the NANN and recognized by the National Association of Neonatal Therapists and the Council for International Neonatal Nurses as the definitive resource for evidence-based, best practices in trauma informed, neuroprotective, developmentally supportive care for hospitalized infants and families. In her role as president of Caring Essentials Collaborative, Ms. Coughlin has educated, inspired, and empowered more than 20,000 interdisciplinary clinicians from over 20 countries to transform the experience of healthcare for infants, children, and families in crisis. Most recently, Ms. Coughlin and her interdisciplinary faculty have created an assessment-based certificate program endorsed by the NIDCAP Federation International, the National Association of Neonatal Nurses, the Council of International Neonatal Nurses, and the National Association of Perinatal Social Workers in accordance with standards established by the Institute for Credentialing Excellence, to distinguish individuals as Trauma Informed Professionals. Being trauma informed is rediscovering one's own story to connect authentically and compassionately with the stories of others. Stories matter! Embracing our collective stories enables each of us to make a difference in the lives of others and ourselves every day. Mary leads her incredible team at Caring Essentials Collaborative with a bold and ambitious vision to create a kinder, more connected and compassionate world, one moment at a time.


  • This program is offered for .1 ASHA CEUs, (Intermediate Level).

Course Details

Learning Objectives

Upon completion of this course, participants will be able to:

  1. Describe the biology of early life adversity and toxic stress.
  2. List three long-term consequences associated with early life adversity and toxic stress.
  3. Define the concept of trauma stewardship.
  4. List the attributes of a trauma informed professional.
  5. Identify three best practices that mitigate the experience of early life adversity and toxic stress.

Time-ordered Agenda

  • 0:00 - Introduction to the biology of toxic stress
  • 0:10 - Fetal development of stress response and regulatory networks
  • 0:15 - Developmental trajectories of early life stress and trauma
  • 0:20 - Energy costs and epigenetics of toxic stress
  • 0:30 - Morbidity and mortality of early life adversity
  • 0:40 - Trauma stewardship and the healing power of connection
  • 0:50 - The Trauma Informed Professional
  • 0:55 - Q/A
  • 1:00 - End course + quiz

Instructional Level

Information is geared to practitioners with a general working knowledge of current practice trends and literature related to the subject matter. Focus is on increasing understanding and competent application of the subject matter.

Target Audience

PTs who work with adults. OTs who work with adults. SLPs who work with adults and children.

Live Course Information

This course will be presented on the Zoom platform. High-speed internet connection is required.

Recorded Course Information

This course will be available for CEUs until May 20, 2027.

Instructor Financial Disclosures

  • Mary is being paid by Therapy Insights to prepare and present this course.
  • Mary is president and founder of the Caring Essentials Collaborative.
  • Mary is the principal in the company that has developed the TIP (Trauma-Informed Practices) certificate program.

Instructor Non-financial Disclosures

  • None.

Certificates of Completion

Once the exam is completed and you have provided feedback about the course, you will receive an emailed certificate of completion with course title, course instructor name/title, learning objectives, your name, your license number (if desired), and a confirmation from the CE Task Force director confirming completion of course. If your state licensing board requires specific records of course participation (all licensing boards are different), please email us and we will provide the documentation.

Instructional Methodology


Refunds & Cancellation

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