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Health Care Providers Play Important Role in Fight Against Human Trafficking

By Florida Department of Health, Office of Communications

January 18, 2017

The Florida Department of Health is highlighting the important role that health care providers can play in identifying and helping victims of Human Trafficking, many of whom are minors. Since most victims of human trafficking may have contact with a health care professional during the time they are trafficked, it is crucial that employees in a health care setting have the appropriate training to help identify and assist potential victims.

Basic Human Trafficking Awareness training, produced by the Department of Homeland Security's Blue Campaign, has been made available to all department employees. More than 3,600 department staff members have completed this training. Advanced Human Trafficking Training produced by the National Human Trafficking Hotline has been provided to the department's clinical staff. More than 1,250 participants have completed the training and have learned how trafficking victims may come into contact with health care services, how to identify potential victims in a clinical setting and how to identify promising practices for assisting a patient who may be a potential trafficking victim.

The department has created a special section online to maintain resources that are specifically designed to train and assist health care professionals. The additional links offer tips for identifying potential victims of Human Trafficking, suggested screening questions and a framework for a human trafficking protocol in a health care setting. The resources were prepared by the National Human Trafficking Hotline and the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.