Date of Award

Spring 5-28-2022

Document Type

Doctor of Nursing Practice Final Manuscript

Degree Name

Doctor of Nursing Practice



First Advisor

Michael Terry, DNP, FNP, PMHNP


Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACES) are linked to damaging events which happen to people when we are young (0-18). ACEs are connected to a phenomenon known as the toxic stress response which can later become the root etiology for many mental health, substance abuse and chronic medical health complications our society faces. ACEs affect all populations and do not discriminate across socioeconomic, racial, ethnic, gender, or geographic lines. Roughly two thirds of Americans have experienced at least one ACE. This project seeks to perform ACE screening at an Intensive Outpatient behavioral health center by screening for ACEs upon all admissions into the program with the goal of detecting cases with scores of 4 or more towards trauma informed care; as well as, referrals to primary care providers with the goal of treating realized or unrealized potential health problems.